If you want to stay healthy and avoid injury it is important to exercise safely. Here are some tips to help you stay safe and injury-free:
Stop if it hurts: Stop the activity immediately and seek medical advice if you feel discomfort or pain, become extremely breathless or develop an irregular heartbeat.
Warm up and cool down: Try slow stretches and go through the motions of your sport or activity before starting. Cool down with slow stretching.
Pace yourself: Training too hard or too fast can cause injury. Have at least one recovery day each week to rest. Working through any pain will cause more damage.
Mix it up: Try other sports and exercises to reduce the risk of overtraining.
Strap or tape: If a joint is prone to injury, consider strapping or taping it before exercising. Even better, see an exercise physiologist to obtain a program to strengthen the injured area and get advice on proper taping technique.
Stay hydrated: You can lose around one and a half litres of fluid of every hour of exercise, so drink water before, during and after a session.
Be weather aware: Take it easier in hot weather and wear clothing and sunscreen to protect you from the elements.
Do it right: Get the technique right, as improper form or technique can cause injury.
Check the gear: Make sure your shoes and equipment fit properly and are right for the activity. Look after your equipment and check it regularly for safety.
Be sensible: Especially at night or in secluded areas. Take a friend with you and stick to well lit areas and wear bright or light reflective clothing so drivers can see you.