/ Source: The Associated Press
Here are some tips for how to avoid injury while exercising as you age.
- Warm up and stretch first. Muscles are not as flexible as they used to be.
- Don’t be a “weekend warrior.” People who exercise three to five days a week are at less risk for injury that someone who does nothing all week then goes full throttle on the weekend.
- Take lessons, even if you’re not a newcomer to a sport. Proper form and instruction reduce the chance of such injuries as tendinitis or stress fractures.
- Invest in good equipment. Select the proper shoes for your sport, use them only for that sport, and replace them when they lose support or the treads show wear.
- Listen to your body. Pain, swelling and stiffness can be signals it’s time to modify an exercise routine.
- Use the 10 percent rule. Increase activity levels in increments of no more than 10 percent per week, whether you’re calculating miles walked or pounds lifted.
- Strive for balance. To prevent injury, and boredom, exercise regimens should include cardiovascular exercise, strength training and flexibility.
- Add new exercises with care. Devoted exercisers and sedentary beginners alike can get injured if they take on too many activities at once.
- Anyone who has had injuries such as tendinitis, arthritis, stress fracture or low back pain should work with an orthopedic surgeon on a fitness routine that promotes good health and minimizes injury risk.