Image from DALL·E.
Athletes form a major portion of a school’s population, ranging from students playing football and basketball to people who play badminton and water polo. With all of these sports, there are many ways for athletes to injure themselves, either a small injury such as muscle sores or sprains, or a bigger injury such as breaking a bone or receiving a concussion. How can our student athletes prevent so many injuries from happening? How do injured athletes take care of their injuries?
Grace Kearney, a cheerleader for WHS, has received a dislocated shoulder from doing what she loves. She was doing a stunt, called the Superman Drop, when she was caught incorrectly by the stunt team. The impact dislocated her shoulder and she was out for a month. She visited the doctor and received a sling for her arm, and while recovering she would move her injured shoulder around to exercise it. When asked how she felt after having to stop participating, she said that, “I missed doing sports, and I didnt like having to stay out of games.” According to Grace, the injury may have been avoidable had the cheer team taken more time to practice each stunt. “At the start of the cheer season, we were rushing through learning stunts, and didn’t practice what needed work,” she says. She no longer does that stunt but is now back in the game doing what she loves.
At our school, there have been many instances of fractures, concussions, broken bones, and more depending on the sport. Josh Newman, a sophomore at WHS who plays on our basketball team, and has also played on the baseball and football teams, has suffered multiple knee injuries, broken bones, and has missed a total of around two and a half years in recovery. He sprained a knee, which took him out of basketball for about a month, and he has received a broken foot in baseball, and a broken arm in football. Many of these injuries happen during the game, and aren’t as avoidable as others.
There are ways you can help to prevent yourself from getting injured, such as not over exerting yourself, and doing exercise regularly to keep yourself in shape. Squats are a great exercise no matter the sport since most if not all sports require major use of your legs, and squats target major leg muscles. To get the most out of your squats it is best to plant your heels, look up, and to get at least a 90 degree angle when squatting. Burpees are another great exercise for athletes and it doesn’t require any equipment, all you need is space. A burpee consists of three steps: standing up straight, then going to a push up position, and then jumping back up into the air as high as you can. Burpees are a quick and easy workout that will keep you in shape and ready to go.
Ashley Nahale, a PE teacher and gym fan at Washington, says that one of the best ways to make sure you are in the best shape for working out or sports, is to make sure you prepare for the activity. There are stretches and workouts that are better for specific sports, so training using those methods will be a great way to make sure you are in shape. But, you also want to make sure you take time to cool down and rest between workouts. If you do start feeling like you might be injured, don’t push through it; instead, take some time to check it out and rest to let any small injuries heal before they become worse. You can also heat or ice your injury depending on the type of injury you have. Depending on the severity of the injury, ice baths and rehab are amazing ways to get back to your best. Resistance band therapy is great as well, such as lateral raises and squats using a resistance band.
Though it is impossible to prevent all injuries from happening, hopefully with this information you can stay in shape and take care of yourself so that injuries are less likely to happen. But, if you do injure yourself, be sure to see a doctor or other medical professional, and to take care of your injury.