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Man Kayaking

Four Tips to Avoid Summer Sports Injuries

By: Caroline Barichievich, PT, MSPT, CSCS, and Alan Barichievich, MS, PT

Summer sports are a great way to stay active and maintain physical distance while enjoying some fun in the sun. Don’t let common types of injuries like sprains, twists, muscle pulls, or tendon tears  keep you from the many outdoor activities Lake Tahoe offers. Here are four tips to set you up for success as you hit the trail, water, or wherever your favorite summer sports take you:

Tip One:

Warm up and cool down. Stretch the muscle groups used in the activity you’re about to pursue, or have just finished. For example, swing a golf club a few times to warm up your hips, or do some shoulder and back stretches before hopping into the kayak. After a long hike, run, or bike ride, wind down with some quad, hamstring, and calf stretches.  

Tip Two:

Watch your form. Biomechanics and form are important aspects of sports performance to help prevent injury. Maintain posture, and check in with yourself to ensure your form, range of motion, as well as, hand and foot placement are correct. Know your limits, as many injuries come from participating in an activity while exhausted.

Tip Three:

Alternate activities. Try to engage in different types of activities to use different muscle groups. By mixing it up, you can enjoy a variety of outdoor play while avoiding overuse injuries. Be sure to add rest days for recovery to your summer sports schedule.

Tip Four:

Wear the appropriate gear. Sporting the proper footwear, clothing, and safety gear for the activity improve performance and make it so much more enjoyable. Stay hydrated, and use a broad spectrum sunscreen while outdoors enjoying your summer sports. 

Whether you plan to cycle, rock climb, paddle, golf, hike, or run, we hope you have fun and play it safe. Make sure to follow guidelines for outdoor recreation and prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the area. Should an injury or accident occur, don’t hesitate to proceed to the nearest emergency department, or seek care from a medical expert. 

Physical therapy and rehabilitation experts, Alan Barichievich, MS, PT, and Caroline Barichievich, PT, MSPT, CSCS, recently presented on shoulder injury prevention in Barton Health’s free community Wellness Webinar series. To find out more about upcoming health webinars, visit To learn more about personalized rehabilitation programs that improve body mechanics, range of motion, and getting back to favorite activities, visit BartonOrthopedicsAndWellness/Rehabilitation or call 530.539.6600.