Monday, August 13, 2012

Sports Medicine Top Tips for Effective Exercise

With all the recent research and education in sports medicine, there's no excuse for a new athlete to sustain serious injury. By following these ten tips, you'll increase your chances for a successful and injury-free workout routine that can be continued for years to come!

1. Before Beginning a Workout Routine, Visit the Doctor

Your new exercise routine will place stress on your body, so you'll want to make sure that your muscles, your heart, your lungs, and your entire body will be able to handle the extra stress. For instance, if you have undiagnosed heart disease, you'll want to know that before you begin to place extra cardiovascular stress on your heart and lungs!

Your doctor can also provide you with helpful tips for beginning a safe and effective workout routine. Talk about your ultimate exercise goals, and get your doctor's input.

2. Work with a Personal Trainer

After your visit to the doctor, you'll want to find a qualified personal trainer who can help you begin your exercise program safely. The professional guidance is well worth the expense for beginners! You'll learn how to perform exercises correctly to avoid injury, what types of exercise will help you reach your goals, and how your diet will affect your exercise.

3. Gradually Increase Your Workouts

Many sports medicine specialists agree that beginning small and gradually increasing is much more effective than beginning with a bang! Typically, new athletes are excited and ready to hit the gym, training for an hour in the first session. Unfortunately, this results in incredibly sore muscles, exhaustion, and discouragement. Instead, begin with a 20-minute workout three times a week, and gradually increase the time. You'll still get the sore muscles, but your body will have time to adjust, and you'll thoroughly enjoy each workout and its results.

4. Always Warm Up and Cool Down

Never begin any type of workout without warming up your muscles, and never end a workout abruptly without stretching. Your muscles need that time to adjust to the new activity. Many sprains and strains can be avoided with a 15-minute warm up session.

5. Drink Plenty of Water

Dehydration can cause exhaustion, as well as injury. Your body needs to be well hydrated as you begin your workout, so plan to drink at least 16 ounces of water in the two hours before you hit the gym. Continue to drink water throughout your work out to replace fluids lost through perspiration. And of course, after your workout, you'll want to drink another 8-16 ounces.

6. Take Time for Recovery

Your muscles need time to recover, and your body needs rest. Make sure that you are getting plenty of sleep at night. Plan to allow each muscle group at least two days to recuperate before you work it again. That doesn't mean you avoid the gym for two days, you just work different muscle groups in a three-day rotation.

Enjoy your new workout routine! Your body will appreciate the benefits, and your mind will enjoy the activity. And by following the rules provided by sports medicine authorities, you'll be able to stay safe and have fun with each workout!

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