This one goes out to the weekend warriors! These are some basics for those that think they can jump up and still go without consequences. The day of activity comes along and you want to just dive in like you did when you were a kid. Well think again! Be smart and take the time to know your body and your normal activity level. Preparation of activity will save you anywhere from a couple of days of sore muscles to an injury that could have been prevented. Are you exercising regularly or have a physical job that keeps you limber? No, well then start with a little warm up for the what you’ll be asking of your body. Do a quick little jog and get your heart rate up. Stretch, just like in gym class or before a sporting event. Get the blood flowing to those muscles get them limber and ready for action. Finally do some activity-based movements, warm up and get used to the movements you’ll be utilizing. That quick jarring stop or jump or change in direction can cause an injury to happen if your body isn’t ready. (Exercising regularly will of course be the best way to stay on top of your game). Did you over do it again? Is it a sprain or a strain? A sprain is when there is stretching or tearing of the ligaments in joints like the knee, foot, ankle, etc. A strain involves pulled muscle(s) and/or tendon(s) such as the quads, back, calf, etc. OK you think you might have hurt yourself, now you pay the P.R.I.C.E. Follow the P.R.I.C.E. guidelines: Protect, make sure effected area is securely protected till it can be evaluated, utilizing a wrap, taping, bracing to immobilize so no other damage will occur. Rest, taking a break and stopping activity that is causing soreness or pain. If you are unable to stop the activity then change what you are doing, i.e. instead of running, walk. Ice, icing is best treatment for acute injuries with inflammation. Icing the area with a light barrier between the ice and the bare skin is recommended for 10-20 minutes several times a day with a 40-60 minute break. Compression, using a compression wrap (like an ACE bandage) will assist to keep swelling down. Make sure you do not have the wrap on too tight as you will cut of blood circulation. Elevation, swelling and soreness are common with injuries. Elevating the injury higher that the heart using pillows while icing can decrease the swelling. (When in doubt use ice.) Massage will make it better right? Of course the pain relief, manipulation, and mobilization is helpful but remember if you have an injury please wait 24-48 hours after swelling has gone down to visit a massage therapist. Your body is telling you something, so please listen to it. After which we are more than happy to work on areas that need attention with in our scope of practice. Overall weekend warriors we love your enthusiasm in being active just be conscious of your body and it’s limits.