It’s club swimming season across the country. If your children swim on a team, even for fun, you know that it’s great exercise. Unfortunately, kids can get hurt too. Approximately 250,000 patients were seen in doctor’s offices, clinics and emergency rooms for swimming injuries. Let’s discuss some tips to prevent swimming injuries.
Warm up and stretch before every practice or meet.
Cold muscles are more prone to injury. Start your practice with a quick warmup to get your muscles moving and blood flowing. Warm up with stationary biking, jumping jacks or running or walking in place for a few minutes. Then slowly and gently stretch, holding each stretch for 30 seconds.
Watch your technique.
Make every effort to perfect your stroke technique in order to try to stay healthy. Have your coach look for any change in your stroke mechanics. If you do have some technique flaw, try to correct it before you develop pain. Once you start feeling pain, you might alter your technique just a little bit. This change in mechanics can make the problem worse.
Use rehab exercises on a regular basis.
Learn exercises to strengthen the rotator cuff muscles, muscles around the shoulder blade, abdominal muscles, lower back muscles, and quadriceps and hip muscles. Then perform them regularly, maybe before practices or during dryland training. This extra work might prevent swimming injuries or at least help you decrease the chance of suffering overuse problems.
Tell your coach, athletic trainer or parents if you have pain.
Depending on the severity and the location of the pain, you might not even need to stop swimming entirely. Maybe you only need to adjust your training in the pool or dryland training or do a short course of physical therapy. If your pain isn’t getting better, considering going to see an orthopaedic surgeon. Often finding out what the problem is and taking quick steps to fix it might help your problem from becoming a more serious injury.