Importance of warm up and cool down for summer sports!

The summer months can see an increase in people taking part in sport and physical activities. Whether it is because of inspiration from the summer sports we see on TV, such as Wimbledon and football and athletics, or simply down to the warmer and dryer days; summer is the time for sport.

Many people who take to sport as a bit of fun with friends or who are new to it may ignore the importance of a proper warm up and a cool down. A simple game of tennis or a run with friends can result in injury to muscles and joints that may require physiotherapy if a person does not warm up, especially if they have not done any physical exercise in a while. Not warming down afterwards can lead to cramp and painful muscle spasms so it is always vital to do a proper warm up and cool down before and after any kind of sporting activity.

Warming up

Warming up and stretching before taking part in any summer sport relaxes and prepares your muscles for physical activity. A proper warm up will also raise your heart rate, which, in turn, will allow for more oxygen to be transferred to your muscles to allow them to work properly when you need them. Not warming up can result in strained or even torn muscles, as they will be tight and stiff. A muscle injury can leave you needing physiotherapist treatment to help it recover and repair itself.

Cooling down

Cooling down after physical exercise allows your body to burn off any excess lactic acid that is caused by the body burning glucose for energy. If this excess lactate isn’t used up then it can attack the muscles causing painful cramps and muscle spasms. Ensuring you do some cooling down exercises and stretches after sport or physical activity can help protect your muscles from seizing or tightening up.

Even a friendly kick about with friends can leave you with a serious muscle injury if you don’t warm up or cool down properly. If you are considering more intense summer sport then a trained physiotherapist can offer you a sports massage will help your body and especially the muscles, prepare for some intense physical exertion. A sports massage can also help your muscles to recover from physical activity too.

The summer is the ideal time to get out and enjoy sport, just remember to look after your body in the process.