How to keep moving as we start moving more!

Flowers are blooming, the taste of Chicago is in full force, and your rec beach volleyball league has begun! Summer is here in full force, and as the weather warms, we tend to spend more time outside being active. As movement increases, so can your chance of injury. What can you do prevent injury to ensure you make the most of summertime in Chicago?

While there is no way to avoid ALL injuries, there are certainly things you can do to reduce our chance of experiencing them. Today we’ll learn how to keep your body safe during three common summer activities.

 Riding your bike

Propper bike posture

While we all know a friend who bundles up and rides his or her bike through the dead of winter, we find ourselves hopping on a Divvy or commuting to work on bike more in the summer.

Safety Tip: 

Do your best to maintain a straight spine as you’re riding your bike instead of rounding your back. While you may need to exert more effort to do this and bend more from the hips, this will help to reduce the wear and tear on your discs between your vertebrae (spinal bones). While some of these tips may seem obvious there are many people who miss these cues and suffer repetitive type injuries because of it.

Playing volleyball on the beach

Beach volleyball is a staple across the Chicago lake front all summer, but sand is an unstable surface that can cause injury if we’re not careful

Safety Tip: 

Be careful as you jump and land in the sand. The uneven surface can put you at greater risk for spraining an ankle, knee, or hip. As you jump and land, try to do so with two feet to absorb the force on the way down by landing in a controlled squat with your chest tall and your spine straight (neutral). If you must jump off one leg to be the hero and save the ball from dropping, do your best to not fight the momentum as you land and roll on to your back and shoulder instead of trying to land awkwardly on one leg.

 Jogging

proper jogging posture

Whether you are jogging for fun or you are playing a pick up game of soccer, body mechanics are often overlooked.

Safety Tip:

When jogging, make sure your head is over your shoulders and not protruding forward. Your shoulders should be rolled back and down with your ribs tucked. Make sure the low back is neutral by tucking your tailbone and keeping the pelvis directly beneath the rib cage rather than behind it. Sticking out your booty on Instagram to show your gains is fine, but when you’re jogging, do your best to keep a neutral alignment for the best chances of staying injury free.

There you have it – a few quick tips for how to protect your body during some common summer activities! As always, call us at (773) 296-2766 or make an appointment using the link below to learn more about your own body, to stay out of pain, and to improve your athletic performance. There’s no cookie-cutter treatment plans at Northcenter Healthcare, so whenever you come in for an assessment, you can be sure that we’re doing things to improve specific issues that pertain to you!

CLICK HERE to make your appointment online!