Here are three tips to help you start playing a sport safely at any age.
1. Be Flexible
Ensuring you stretch after you take part in a sport can prevent injuries, particularly with sports that involve running, jumping and quickly changing direction.
Stretching can prevent stiffness as you age, give you more freedom of movement, and help you keep a full range of motion in your joints and muscles .
This not only provides an overall well-being, but it also allows you to continue to perform daily activities, such as driving and getting dressed.
Stretching is an important part of activities such as yoga and tai chi, but it should also be implemented while doing sports such as cycling, swimming, tennis, and skiing.
2. Work Out Your Body and Your Brain
Competitive sports require you to focus totally. Whether you need to pay attention to the form of your swim stroke or the tennis ball, your brain is getting just as much exercise as your body. Even a quieter sport like golf can be mentally demanding and also require your brain to put in some work.
Moreover, sports can reduce stress levels, which can reduce anxiety, improve your overall mental health, and boost your overall feeling of well-being.
3. Take It Slow and Keep It Gentle
Pick up a sport that will treat gently on your body. If you have broken a bone or are at a higher risk of doing so due to osteoporosis, you might need to avoid high-impact sports such as tennis, basketball, boxing, or hiking. Instead, consider low-impact sports such as biking or rowing, which can also help strengthen bones and the surrounding muscles.
Low-impact sports are a safer option while they can have just as many benefits. Water-based sports such as swimming and water aerobics have the same health benefits as their land-based counterparts, but with fewer risks of injuries.
Whatever sport you choose, make sure to check with your physician first and listen to your body. Remember that this is about health, not competition.