Basketball is a sport that requires a lot of running, jumping, and changing direction, all of which can cause injury if you are not properly warmed up before you begin playing. Many overuse injuries can be prevented with a few minutes of stretching and warming up.
- The National Academy of Sports Medicine recommends five to 10 minutes of walking, either on a treadmill or elliptical. You should break into a light sweat.
- Stretch out your hamstrings. You can do this by sitting on the ground with your legs extended in front of you. Keep your back straight and your toes pointed to the ceiling. Reach forward over your legs and grab your toes. Hold this position for 15 seconds. Relax and repeat five times.
- Next, loosen your calf muscles. Stand straight with your legs shoulder-width apart. Slowly raise off your heels so you are standing on your toes, like a ballet dancer (but not on top of your toes!). You will feel the stretch in your calf muscles. Hold this position for 10 seconds. Repeat 10 times.
- To stretch out your lower back, lie on the ground with your knees bent. Keep your head and shoulders on the ground as you wrap your arms around your knees, pulling your knees in to your chest. You'll feel the stretch in your lower back. Hold this position for 20 seconds. Repeat five times.
- Roll your shoulders, which can reduce pains and strains while handling the ball. Stand up straight with your shoulder relaxed. Roll your shoulders backwards and forwards- slowly!- and make complete circles if possible. Do two sets of 20 repetitions, one going forward and one going backward.
- To loosen your arm muscles, hold your arms straight out at your sides so your body forms a "T". Make small circles with your arms, clockwise, and progress the circles, making them wider and wider. Repeat going counterclockwise. Do this stretch for one minute.
If you are a basketball player and have a foot problem, call our Newington, Kensington, or Middletown office to make an appointment.
Craig M. Kaufman, DPM
Connecticut Foot Care Centers
Sports Medicine Podiatrist in CT
Podiatrist in Newington
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