Injury prevention tips for weekend warriors

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If you engage in strenuous physical activities during the weekend, you’re commonly known as a weekend warrior. The danger with this designation? You often overexert yourself and could be at risk of injury. Long periods of intense physical activity on weekends are physically demanding. If you’re not well conditioned, you could put yourself at increased risk of injury.

Injuries that weekend warriors can suffer are typically categorized into two types:

Acute injuries: "An acute injury happens when someone falls, trips or gets hit," said Cory Nelson, MD, an orthopedic surgeon who specializes in sports medicine at HonorHealth Scottsdale Thompson Peak Medical Center. "These injuries occur suddenly."

Overuse injuries: Overuse injuries can affect muscles, ligaments, tissue and bones and are often seen in the younger population. These injuries are associated with sports-related activities that are repeated so often that areas of the body don’t have enough time to heal between times of play. "Common overuse injuries often occur when people focus on the same movement repeatedly," Dr. Nelson said. "It’s normal for muscles to feel sore the next day, but pain that lasts could be a sign of a more serious injury."

Injury prevention and treatment

To protect muscles and joints and stay injury-free while being physically active:

  • Gradually allow your body to build endurance.
  • Help loosen muscles and joints with warm-up exercises and a good stretching program.
  • Learn the right technique for the activity and use the right equipment.

Sprains, strains, fractures and tears are among the most common types of sport-related injuries that often require medical treatment.

Apply ice to muscles to reduce pain, swelling and inflammation," Dr. Nelson said. "Depending on the severity of the injury, anti-inflammatory medication, steroid injections and physical therapy may help you get back to doing the activities you enjoy. Other times, surgery may be necessary to repair an injury."

At HonorHealth, orthopedic surgeons offer a variety of treatment options for such injuries as shoulder and knee tendonitis, calf strains, Achilles tendon ruptures, ACL tears and rotator cuff tears.

Your orthopedic surgeon and physical therapist will develop a personalized treatment program to strengthen muscles and promote recovery and healing.

Learn more about orthopedic care at HonorHealth.