The 3 Best Things You Can Do To Avoid Injury
Acute-Chronic Workload Ratio.
One of the main causes of injury is sudden increases in training load. This is especially true if you are poorly conditioned. However it can also be true if you are doing way too much training. (Tim Gabbett has done a lot of research in this area).
If you have a low chronic workload- i.e. train inconsistently or don’t train hard enough, you are more likely to break down when forced to really push yourself. On the other hand too high a chronic workload, i.e training hard for an extended period and not allowing time to recover, can also increase your chances of breaking down.
The key is to get this ratio correct. Strength train and train specifically for your sport, train hard and recover well and before an acute load (e.g. a big race or a match where you will be pushing yourself to your maximum ) reduce the amount you are doing and get more rest before that event.
The best thing you can do to reduce the likelihood of getting injured is to get stronger. The more load you ask your body to cope with, the more load it becomes able to withstand. This also has the added benefit of improving your sporting performance.
Sleep, Nutrition & Hydration.
Don’t underestimate the power of quality sleep. Good food and plenty of water in improve your recovery. Without sleep your system doesn’t get a chance to recover. This means you are more likely to feel those aches and pains, often in the areas where you have had previous injuries. Cryotherapy chambers, ice-baths , compression suits and massages can help you feel better in the short term but focus on adequate sleep nutrition and hydration on a consistent basis to help with your preparation.