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Key Sports

Muay Thai – Instructional Video

 

Injuries and Prevention for the World’s Most Popular Sports

Although Athlon Rub’s Sport formula has origins in martial arts, all sports require a proper warm-up to enhance the training and performance.  A warm-up prepares the body for the physiological challenges to come, aims to enhance performance and helps reduce the risk of injury. Traditionally elements of any warm-up are sub-maximal aerobic exercise to warm the core, an herbal oil like Athlon Rub,  sport-specific movements and dynamic stretching.

Dynamic stretching is typically used before exercise, as part of a warm-up. It helps to stimulate the nervous system, brings blood to the muscles, raises the heart rate and generally helps prepare the body for functional movement.  Static stretching is typically used after, or separately to, a workout.  However, although it may be beneficial for increasing flexibility, it tones down the nervous system and prepares the body to relax and release rather than stimulate.  Practice different sport-specific warm-up strategies to find what works for you.

 

Football ( Soccer )

Football, as it's known in every country outside of the United States (where it's called soccer), is easily the most popular sport on the planet. That's only helped by the fact that it's the most accessible sport on the planet; all you need is a ball, and a couple of items that denote the boundaries of the goal. That's basically it. 

Because the game of football is centered around athletes running at high speeds, starting and stopping frequently, and maneuvering the ball with their feet, the most common injuries involve sprains or strains of leg muscles such as the quadriceps, hamstrings, and calves. The other most common injury involves spraining or rolling a player's ankle. The most severe injuries that players will sustain either involve broken bones -- usually the tibia or fibula (the bones connecting your knee to your feet) -- or tearing of ligaments in the knees.

Therefore, before starting any game, it's essential to raise your core temperature, to ensure blood flow down to the muscles and ligaments below your waist.  Incorporating Athlon Rub into your warm-up routine will ensure you are preparing for the stresses on your body.  Best when applied after a brief sweat has started and when rubbed into the areas used most like your leg muscles and joints.  Most coaches will begin any practice by having their players jog laps around the field, and then progressively increase the speed and intensity of the running.  In the middle of the warming up intensity is when you it is best to apply Athlon Rub during your soccer training / pre-game.   In addition, adding various motions to your running, such as high knees, "butt kicks," and side shuffles, will help loosen hamstring and calf muscles, thus preventing potential sprains, strains, and tears.

 

Crossfit / Weight Lifting

The concept of "strength" is one of the basic human traits that we've come to admire. Competitions to establish who can lift the heaviest weight has been recorded throughout civilization, with the earliest known recordings taking place before the common era. Out of weightlifting, the modern fitness regimen known as "CrossFit" has emerged. CrossFit takes the concept of being able to manipulate both fixed weights, as well as a person's own body weight, and perform various functional movements at high intensity, sometimes for prolonged periods of time.

Because the fundamental essence of lifting weights, in whichever way you choose to perform this, comes down to taxing your muscles while moving around said weight, it would make sense that the majority of injuries sustained through weight lifting or CrossFit involve muscle strains.  All major joints, including the shoulders, elbows, knees, hips, and ankles, involve the main movement muscles, and a whole host of ancillary functional muscles. Based on a given movement, and especially one that's performed incorrectly, straining or even tearing any one of those muscles is very possible.

The most important thing an athlete can do before lifting weights or beginning a CrossFit routine is to simply warm up their body and stretch their muscles. That will ensure that muscles are loosened, thanks to an elevated core temperature and an increased flow of blood and oxygen to the muscles, in order to perform these exercises.  Making Athlon Rub part of your regime will help you warmrup better and keep you looser for tomorrow while helping you beat your personal records (PR).  In addition, it is imperative that "CrossFitters" or weight lifters really focus on maintaining proper technique. The particular movements involved in both types of exercise are very precise, and if performed incorrectly, they can create undue stresses to muscles and body parts that were not meant to handle those stresses.

 

Running / Marathons

Of all the sports known to mankind, there's nothing more simple, ubiquitous, and revered than running. At first, running was a physical skill developed purely for survival; either chasing after potential sources of food, or fleeing from a potential predator. Naturally, humans began to measure how much longer, and faster, they could run against each other, and the sport was born.

Because of the high-impact of a person's legs raising up and down off the ground, during the process of running, the sport actually lends itself to a fair number of injuries. It can cause inflammation and pain in the knee caps (often diagnosed as  Patellofemoral pain syndrome), along the sides of the knees (Iliotibial band syndrome or ITBS), shin splints (also known as medial tibial stress syndrome or MTSS), or various strains to the Achilles tendon, gastrocnemius (calf muscles), or foot muscles (including Plantar fasciitis).  And, of course, there are the usual varieties of straining or pulling muscles for runners who compete in sprinting-based events. All of these injuries can be exacerbated, depending on the type of terrain they are running on. 

The three most important ways an athlete can ensure they don't sustain injuries when running are focused on the type of footwear worn, proper focus on maintaining a good form when running, and ensuring you take the proper measures for recovery. Wearing shoes that specifically designed for running or cross training should ensure that there is sufficient padding that minimizes the impact made to the most sensitive places on your feet. The proper form and technique when running will ensure there is no undue stress placed on different parts of the body that cannot handle it.  Stretching, massaging, applying Athlon Rub, icing, and allowing for sufficient time between your next bout of running ensures that your muscles will recover properly.

 

Tennis

It's estimated that over 15% of the world's population either watch or play tennis, making it the fourth-most popular sport on the planet. Professional athletes playing at the highest levels of the game come from all different continents, all  over the world. It certainly helps that it's enormously popular in the two most populous nations in the world -- China and India -- but it may be just as popular, if not more so, in Europe as well.

The game of tennis obviously requires two key skills: swinging the tennis racket, in order to return the ball to the other side of the court, and chasing after the ball, in order to put you in position to return the volley.  It's no surprise then that the most common injuries sustained by tennis players are sustained as part of these two movements. The most common injury for tennis players is aptly referred to as "tennis elbow." Lateral epicondylitis, as its clinically known, involves the inflammation of the tendons joining the forearm muscles to the outside of the elbow, because of the repeated stress they receive as a result of swinging the tennis racket.  In addition, players often sustain tendonitis in the knees, ankle sprains, and even stress fractures in their back, because of the start, stop, and torque motions involved in getting themselves ready to swing the racket.

Like any exercise that involves a lot of starting and stopping of running motions, they key is to make sure you warm up your muscles properly, so that they aren't strained when you suddenly burst in a given direction.  Using Athlon Rub during on your upper and lower body ensures you don’t omit major parts of your body.  Because of the particular stresses to the arms, elbows, and shoulders, as a result of swinging the tennis racket, it's essential for tennis players to also perform strength-building exercises which can help prepare all the functional muscles around those joints for the wear and tear they will receive while playing the game. Finally, having the right equipment, including a racket that's just the right weight, and the right shoes that support your running motion, are just as critical.

 

Skiing

According to recent snow sports fact sheets, it's estimated that over 15 million people per year participate in skiing each year.  Even with the increased popularity of snowboarding, there's still a very loyal contingent of those who prefer skiing.  Whether that's Alpine skiing, freestyle skiing, or even cross country skiing, the sport has a particular "flavor" for anyone who happens to enjoy said winter pastime. 

Of course, the very idea of placing your feet on long, narrow strips of material designed specifically to allow you to glide down snow and ice at high speeds only naturally lends itself to sustaining injuries; sometimes, these injuries can be highly severe, too.  Sprains, strains, and tears of knee ligaments comprise the biggest bulk of skiing-related injuries. There's a propensity to damage or even tear ligaments in the knee, such as the Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) or Medial Collateral Ligament (MCL), because of the torque placed on these ligaments by the legs attached to the skis.   Warming up properly with Athlon Rub will help loosen the body and avoid the next day tightness typically associated.

The risk of leg injuries is always inherent when skiing.  Still, one of the best courses of action is to wear a brace on your knees before skiing, and then start off going slowly down the slope. This will gradually allow for your knees to get accustomed to the strain you'll be placing on them.  Similarly, you can take caution with the way you grab your poles during the process, ensuring the loop is on correctly and securely or even purchase a wrist guard and wear it while skiing.

 

Basketball

It's estimated that over one billion people around the world consider themselves a "follower" of basketball. While it's obviously most popular in the United States, its popularity in Canada, China, Spain, Australia, France, Turkey, Germany, the Philippines, Brazil, and Argentina, among many other countries, has exploded over the last quarter of a century.

Because the game of basketball has such a heavy use of both your arms and your legs, the types of injuries sustained from playing can occur anywhere from your hands to your feet. The most common types of injuries range from sprains to tears of ligaments involving a variety of joints: knees, ankles, wrists, fingers, and even toes. There are always instances of contusions and traumatic impact events, due to the simple fact that players can collide with each other at high speeds, and in worst case scenarios, it's not uncommon for player to tear ligaments or muscles in their knees, ankles, or shoulders.

Given how athletically taxing the game of basketball can be, the two most important factors for any participant should be to ensure proper conditioning and hydration.   Basketball players spend long periods of time running back and forth at high speeds. For participants not used to this type of physical exertion, this can lead to a lot of adverse effects both during and after the game. They need to gradually build up to the level of cardiovascular endurance required for the game, through a steady progression of cardiovascular exercise and high intensity interval training. Along those lines, because of how much muscles are taxed, and because of the subsequent perspiration from the exercises, players need to ensure they drink enough water, or sports beverages, both during and after playing.

 

Cricket

Baseball might be the pastime of the United States, but Cricket is the most popular "bat and ball" sport around the rest of the world. Some of the most densely populated countries in the Eastern Hemisphere, including Australia, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and New Zealand, among many others, are crazy about the sport. Cricket championship matches is the third most watched sporting event in the world, only behind the FIFA World Cup and Rugby World Cup.

The most common injuries associated with Cricket are largely dependent on the position the player specializes at. For bowlers, and especially those who happen to specialize in fast bowling, the two most common injuries involve strains to their hamstrings and core muscles. They're often the result of the process of the bowler sprinting and then performing the full-body motion of delivering the ball, as the speed of the bowl is derived from the energy generated by both of those processes. Conversely, for the batter, the most common injuries are associated with potentially being struck by a wayward bowl.

As far as protection from being hit by the bowl, batsmen need to ensure their equipment is properly placed and secured over their body. But in addition to that, they have also been known to wrap up joints in athletic tape, to minimize the impact, and potential swelling, of such an injury. And for bowlers, the most important part of ensuring their body will not suffer as a result of the exertion created in the bowling process, they need to ensure they warm up their bodies properly before the game, especially given the fact that there are periods of starting and stopping between pitches. Warming up for 20-30 minutes with a combination of cardiovascular exercise and stretching the hamstrings, lower back, and shoulders is a must.

A warm-up prepares the body for the physiological challenges to come, aims to enhance performance and helps reduce the risk of injury. Traditionally elements of any warm-up are sub-maximal aerobic exercise to warm the core, an herbal oil like Athlon Rub,  sport-specific movements and static stretching and/or dynamic stretching.

Dynamic stretching is typically used before exercise, as part of a warm-up. It helps to stimulate the nervous system, brings blood to the muscles, raises the heart rate and generally helps prepare the body for functional movement. Static stretching is typically used after, or separately to, a workout.  However, although it may be beneficial for increasing flexibility, it tones down the nervous system and prepares the body to relax and release rather than stimulate.  Practice different sport-specific warm-up strategies to find what works for you.

 

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