"It's important to warm up, stretch and ease into exercise to prevent sports injuries," Dr. Barry Root, chairman of physical medicine and rehabilitation at Glen Cove Hospital in Glen Cove, N.Y., said in a hospital news release.
Sprains, strains, twists, and muscle and tendon tears and pulls are among the most common types of injuries.
Root offered the following sports injury prevention tips:
- Warm up properly. For example, swing a golf club a few times to warm up hips or shoot some baskets to loosen up muscles and joints.
- Stretch before running, golfing or cycling.
- Try to do different types of activities to use different muscle groups.
- Wear the appropriate footwear and clothing for the sport.
"People who take part in regular activities can develop overuse injuries, when they push their bodies past the limit; these conditions accumulate over time and the body is signaling to take it easy," Root said.
"If you have a more significant injury, such as a torn ligament in your knee, you'll have to immediately stop what you're doing on the tennis or basketball court and seek medical help," he advised.
The U.S. National Library of Medicine has more about sports safety.