Top Tips for Exercising in Winter

exercise in winter

While the mornings and evenings are cold and dark, it’s no wonder that many of us feel like hanging up our sportswear and hibernating for winter, but staying active at this time of year is a fantastic way to fight off the winter blues and feel energetic, making it much easier to get up and out of the house in the morning, or after work.

Here are some quick tips to help you stay safe and avoid injury when you are exercising this winter:

Tell someone where you are going

If you are going out for a long run or bike ride at winter, make sure you tell someone where you are going. Even if you are only going for a quick session, it’s always safest to let someone else know.

Wear layers

Dressing in the wrong clothing is a common mistake. Exercise quickly generates heat, making you feel as though it is warmer than it really is, however, as your sweat evaporates, heat is pulled from your body, leaving you feeling chilled. The solution is to dress in layers that you can remove when you start to sweat and put back on when you feel cold.

Firstly, avoid cotton as this stays wet next to your skin – instead, start with a base layer of synthetic material that draws sweat away from your body. Next, wear a fleecy layer, and then a layer of breathable, waterproof clothing.

Wear a hat, gloves and thick socks

We lose around 50% of body heat from our head, so a hat is essential when you are exercising in the winter. You should also look after your extremities, wearing gloves and thick, thermal socks to keep your fingers and toes warm. If you are worried about your hands getting too sweaty, wear a pair of glove liners underneath a pair of heavier gloves and remove the heavier gloves when your hands feel too warm.

Drink plenty of fluids

Keeping hydrated is just as important in cold weather as it is during the summer. Be sure to drink fluids before, during and after your workout, even if you don’t feel thirsty. You can actually become dehydrated in the cold when you sweat, breathe hard and produce more urine, however, it can be harder to notice in cold conditions.

Don’t forget reflective clothing

If you are exercising in the morning or evening, you will certainly need reflective clothing to ensure that you are visible in the dark. If you ride a bike, ensure that you fit it with headlights and tail lights. Remember, it gets dark early at this time of year, so if you are planning to be out for a while in the afternoon, make sure you are prepared for it to get dark.

Stretch!

It’s absolutely vital to spend time stretching your muscles before you exercise in order to avoid injury. Ensure you make enough time to be fully warmed up before you start your workout. You should also make sure to warm down properly when you finish your workout.

Get warm quickly when you finish your workout

When you back from exercising, your first priority should be to get warm by taking a hot shower or bath, or changing into clean, warm clothing.

 

If you are suffering from injuries or aches and pains that are preventing you from exercising, or are worried about getting injured when exercising, osteopaths can not only treat different symptoms and conditions, but they can also provide advice on exercises and how to prevent the recurrence of injury.

Call 0121 705 4499 to book an appointment with one of our team of osteopaths.

Can Osteopathy Help Treat Knee Pain?

knee pain

Knee pain is common amongst people of all ages. Most often, knee pain is a result of injury, but can also be linked to medical conditions, such as arthritis and infections. Minor knee pain can often take care of itself, however, major injuries will need to be treated with physical therapy or in severe cases, surgery.

Symptoms

Knee pain can be a difficult and painful experience. Teenagers may experience knee pain during excessive activity or during growth spurts when your tendons and muscles are straining your growth plates. Older generations are more likely to suffer with knee pain with arthritis or damage to the menisci.

Symptoms may include:

  • Knee locking
  • Weakness
  • Swelling and stiffness
  • Difficulties straightening your knee
  • Popping, clicking or crunching noises
  • Redness and warmth when touched
  • Pain when bending
  • Pain from long periods of sitting

Common Problems

Being one of the most common complaints, knee pain can arise from a variation of problems, such as:

Referred Pain – Stemming from compression of the nerves or trigger points in your muscles further up or down your leg.

Bursitis Inflammation – Bursa acts as padding in your knee, situated between your tendons, bones and muscles. They can begin to cause pain above or below your knee if inflamed or irritated.

Osteoarthritis – In short, osteoarthritis is the wear and tear of your knee. This can be treated effectively and treatment is always better the earlier you begin. If you do suffer with osteoarthritis, you may experience pain when moving too much and your knees may become stiff.

Sports Injuries –With excessive force during sports activities, certain ligaments are put at risk of tearing. This includes your cruciate ligaments, joint capsule, collateral ligaments and other surrounding structures. When your knee is over rotated, your meniscal (located in tibia and femur lining) are also at risk of injury.

Osteopathy

Osteopathy is based on the philosophy that when our body is aligned correctly, it functions more efficiently. With a holistic approach, we consider the social and psychological factors to your pain. We stretch, massage and manipulate the area affected to relieve the pain, reduce swelling and improve your mobility.

Your knees are dependent on your muscles and joints to function properly. Our trained professional osteopathic team will examine your injury, before gently manipulating the surrounding joints and muscles. The aim of this is to rebalance the mechanics of your body to facilitate healing through proper alignment.

Booking Your Appointment

At Solihull Osteopathic Practice, our dedicated team aim to provide quality, professional treatments for pain relief. With a holistic approach to wellbeing and specialist osteopathic techniques, we provide a calm and safe environment for our patients. As a member of the Institute of Osteopathy and registered members of the General Osteopathic Council you can trust that you are in safe hands.

To book your first appointment with us, call a member of our team today on 0121 705 4499.