Fractures are one of the most prevalent injuries among athletes, with stress fractures accounting for up to 20% of sports medicine clinic injuries. A stress fracture occurs from overuse, while traumatic fractures result from a sudden impact on the bone, and both are common in athletes.
Read on for our top fracture prevention tips for athletes.
Prioritize Bone Health
Bone mass peaks around age 25 to 30, then declines with age. Athletes younger than 25 can work to develop bone strength and athletes over 30 can maintain bone strength by:
- Getting enough calcium in your diet, or taking calcium supplements as needed
- Getting enough vitamin D, either from sunlight, fortified foods, or fatty fish
- Regularly completing weight-bearing exercises to encourage new bone development
Work Up to Intense Exercise
If you’re coming back from time off, increasing the intensity of your training, or starting a new form of physical activity, do so gradually. A sudden increase in the intensity or frequency of your workouts can increase your risk of fractures. Giving your muscles and bones time to adjust to the new workout can protect you from injury.
Limit Exercise When You’re Fatigued or in Pain
When athletes push through pain or fatigue, they put themselves at risk of injury, including fractures. Exhaustion can lead to falls, unhealthy movement patterns, and increased impact on your bones. So, give your body time to rest when you’re tired or in pain.
Wear Supportive Footwear
Wearing supportive footwear that’s designed for your sport or physical activity can help prevent stress fractures and other injuries. While high-quality footwear can be expensive, it’s a worthwhile investment in your health (and may save you on medical bills in the future).
The expert team at Florida Wellness Medical Group is here to support your passion by helping you avoid fractures and other injuries. Schedule an appointment today!