Six Tips To Help You Avoid Sports Injury This Summer


With summer sports and camp season on the horizon, it’s important to know how you or your child can avoid sports injuries this summer. While it’s impossible to prevent every injury, there are some steps you can take to help make injury less likely. Start now to be prepared for when the season gets underway.

Proper equipment, including footwear, is a must. Wearing running sneakers for tennis, pickleball and other court sports puts you at high risk for injury. Court shoes are a must for these activities, and like any other protective gear, they must fit well, be in good condition and be sized appropriately.

Steps to Help Avoid Sports Injury

While injuries are common during any type of physical activity, it is possible to prevent them in many cases with some basic precautions.

  1. Undergo a sports physical before the season to check for underlying health conditions.

  2. Gradually increase time spent performing physical activity to reacclimate the body for practices, games and camps.

  3. Ensure you have sport-specific protective equipment, including the correct cleats, helmet and pads, as needed.

  4. Drink plenty of water before, during and after physical activity to maintain proper hydration and avoid overheating.

  5. Warm up before games and practices and cool down afterward.

  6. Stop participating in physical activities when hurt.

If a Sports Injury Occurs

Even when you take every precaution, you may still experience a sports injury. When this occurs, remove yourself or your child from the game or practice until the injury can be evaluated.

Minor injuries, like muscle aches, can sometimes be treated effectively using basic at-home care. You can try the RICE — rest, ice, compress, elevate — protocol. If the pain doesn’t subside after a day or two, or if you develop any bruising, call your doctor and be evaluated by a specialist. Remember that negative X-rays do not mean there is no injury. Despite common thinking, foot and ankle sprains can be serious problems that must be handled appropriately to prevent long-term consequences.

To schedule an appointment with a specialist at UM BWMC, call 410-553-8170 or visit

Lauren Newnam, DPM, is the chair of podiatry for the Department of Orthopedics at the University of Maryland Baltimore Washington Medical Center.


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