The Self Care Forum definition of self care is “The actions that individuals take for themselves, on behalf of and with others in order to develop, protect, maintain and improve health, wellbeing and wellness.”
As a leading provider of sports injury treatments, we often see patients who use self care as a motivator to partake in sporting activities. Exercise is a fantastic way to improve your health, wellbeing and wellness.
Research has shown that physical activity can boost self-esteem, mood, sleep quality and energy as well as reducing the risk of stress and depression. Health promotion consultant, Dr Nick Cavill went so far as to say “If exercise were a pill, it would be one of the most cost-effective drugs ever invented.”
With this in mind, here, we are going to advise on the importance of taking listening to your body when taking part in physical activities to prevent injuries, this will ensure that you can stay on a pain free journey to improved and lasting self care.
Human bodies are amazing machines! From birth to death, every minute of your life, your lungs are breathing in air, supplying oxygen to your bloodstream, which your heart pumps through your arteries to reach every cell of your body. Your digestive system breaks down food to release sugar (and other useful things), which is then used with the oxygen supplied by your lungs to release the energy which allows you to keep on living and do the activities you want to do.
You can think, feel, and control your muscles to such a precise extent that you can throw the netball through the hoop, or kick the football to the back of the net, while dodging your opponent’s advances. What other machine runs for an average of eighty years, without breaking down or having some parts replaced?
Yes, your body is incredible and amazing and adaptable, but essentially it is a machine that your brain sits in charge of. When things go wrong, a doctor, physiotherapist or other healthcare professionals can help you get back to full health, but wouldn’t it be better to get it working at peak physical form before it starts getting into trouble?
Preparing your body and muscles for exercise is key to preventing injuries. We have a range of wellbeing classes such as Tai Chi, Yoga and therapist led Pilates which are a great way to introduce yourself to exercise, and can help strengthen your body and mind. Gentle exercise helps to prepare your body for more physical forms of exercise such as running or playing a sport.
Just because we enjoy something, doesn’t meant that we do it well. The pain around your kneecap that you’re getting when running may be a sign that your running style isn’t quite as good as it could be. For example, are your quads strong enough to support efficient patella movement, or are your gluteal muscles strong enough to maintain good pelvis and knee alignment while you take the weight on that leg?
Pain is a warning that something is wrong, doing something about it early may mean you can avoid causing undue wear to your body and prevent the need for intensive treatment at a later date.
At Newcastle Sports Injury Clinic, we offer a range of services to help you improve and maintain your physical health. Our osteopath can assess and treat postural tensions and restrictions that may be negatively impacting your freedom of movement, our massage therapists can help alleviate muscle tension and reduce scar tissue, while our acupuncturists can support wellbeing and recovery from a wide range of health conditions. You take your car for an MOT once a year, so why not your body?