How Athletes Take Care of Their Bodies
Athletic body care is one of the most important aspects of playing any sport. Whether you’re a professional or just playing to stay fit and active, knowing how to take care of your body as an athlete can help you avoid injury, recover from a sports injury faster, and stay performing your best.
Today, we’ll be looking at how athletes take care of their bodies to stay in top shape. It doesn’t take professional sponsorships to take great care of your body! Keep reading for athletic body care tips you can use to stay healthy and be ready to perform at any time.
The Importance of How Athletes Take Care of Their Bodies
No matter what level you’re at, learning how athletes take care of their bodies can help you take care of your’s the same way. Having the right workout recovery routine is essential for keeping your body loose, allowing muscles to heal, and preventing uncomfortable conditions like Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS).
A few athletic body care tips you can incorporate into your fitness routines include:
- Warm up properly
- Know your limits
- Get plenty of rest
- Cool down the right way
- Get a massage
- Eat healthy and stay hydrated
Warm Up Exercises for Athletes
The first and easiest stop in our exploration of how athletes take care of their bodies is with proper warm up exercises. Starting any intense physical activity without warming up is the fastest way to injure yourself. Warm up exercises for athletes help loosen muscles and get them ready to perform.
Warm up exercises should include dynamic stretches such as lunges, jumping jacks, or hip circles. These stretches are aimed at providing a full range of motion and also serve to lengthen muscle fibers that can increase mobility and flexibility. Dynamic stretching should result in breaking a small sweat. Once you’re warmed up, you’re ready to go!
How to Take Care of Your Body as an Athlete By Knowing Your Limits
You might think that learning how athletes take care of their bodies is all about pushing themselves to the max every time. The truth, however, is that athletic body care is dependent on knowing your limits and respecting them. Did you overdo it during a workout earlier in the week? Respect that by cooling it down a little for a bit. This helps with how the body heals itself and can help recovering from a sports injury much more efficiently.
Learning how to take care of your body as an athlete by knowing your limits is a strength in itself. Sure, we all want to do our best and show our best, but we can’t do that if we’ve not allowed ourselves to heal properly. In addition to the risk of immediate injury, pushing yourself beyond your bodily limits may result in permanent losses in range of motion or flexibility, which could lessen your performance ability.
Athletic Body Care Depends on Getting Enough Rest
Just like knowing their limits is part of how athletes take care of their bodies, so is making sure they get enough rest and relaxation. Resting is part of how the body heals itself. When you’re training hard or performing, your muscles get small tears in the tissue. While you may not experience a larger sports injury right away such as muscle tension or a herniated disc, you need to let these microtears heal in order to maximize your athletic performance capability.
Rest and recovery doesn’t mean you have to be stationary. You might try cross training to work out different sets of muscles on different days. You may also try active recovery, like when a runner opts to walk for a couple days after an event instead of running again right away.
If you’re looking for ways to recover at home, simple stretches can help you maintain range of motion and keep muscles loose. You might also try different recovery tools for athletes like a zero gravity chair. The potential health benefits of zero gravity chairs include enhanced bodily healing, increased blood circulation, back pain relief, and better sleep quality. The bonus features of zero gravity luxury recliners may include heat therapy and massage functions that help with how athletes take care of their bodies, as well.
Post Workout Recovery Routines for Athletic Body Care
If dynamic stretches and exercises are essential parts of warming up before physical activity, then having a proper post workout recovery routine is their equally-important counterpart. Taking care of muscle groups after physical activities is a major part of how athletes take care of their bodies. Yes, your muscles were warmed up and loose from the activity you completed, but without a cool down routine, you risk muscle tension and stiffness as well as more painful possibilities like DOMS or muscle spasms.
Getting a Massage for Athletic Body Care
A popular way you may have seen for how athletes take care of their bodies is with massage. Getting a massage can have a variety of positive effects on athletic body care such as keeping muscles loose, helping increase blood flow, alleviating stress, and calming your mind.
If regular trips to a massage therapist don’t work with your schedule or sound too expensive, there are a number of recovery tools for athletes you might consider instead. For example, portable massage guns like the Theragun or Hyperice Hypervolt have become popular in recent years. These portable tools are great as part of an immediate post workout recovery routine.
For more advanced recovery, tools like a zero gravity chair with heat therapy and massage functions combine a multitude of potential health benefits to keep your body in top shape at all times. Different models may offer vibration massage or air pressure massage (also known as air cell massage) that helps deepen your relaxation and enhance your recovery. Having the right recovery tools is certainly critical for how to take care of your body as an athlete!
Hydration and Healthy Eating Habits for Athletes
Part of how athletes take care of their bodies is by regulating what goes into it. It’s not all just about physical recovery and taking care of muscles, but also about staying hydrated and adopting healthy eating habits for peak performance.
Healthy eating habits for athletes may include whole foods like fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and healthy fats. Without enough protein in their diet, muscles can break down and lose mass, affecting performance ability. Whole grains and nuts are also great for healthy diets.
In addition to eating healthy foods, the importance of hydration for athletes can’t be stressed enough. Drinking enough water can help prevent muscle strain or other sports injuries, maintain joint health for athletes, and help the body heal itself during recovery. Making sure you drink enough water is also crucial to avoiding painful muscle spasms or other soreness that can develop after intense physical activity.
We hope this exploration of how athletes take care of their bodies has given you new tips to consider for staying healthy and in top shape. Taking care of your body is crucial to maintaining performance ability. Listening to your body’s limits, eating right, drinking water, or choosing a zero gravity chair as a recovery tool can all work together to keep you ready to get back on the field and play. If you’ve never had an athletic body care routine before, you’ll be amazed at the difference it can make!
For more information on the potential health benefits of zero gravity chairs and how they can enhance active lifestyles, check out these additional resources: