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Older Couple Jogging webAre you a weekend warrior? With summer in full swing, many are anxious to hit the links, court, trails, lake and their own back yard. Remembering to take care of your back will help you continue to enjoy these activities all season long.

Whether your favorite activities consist of golf, running, bicycling, water sports or even yard work, it’s important to warm up. “A short five minute warm up can help stretch muscles that have not been stretched. Stretching before an activity generally reduces stress on the back muscles,” according to John Marshall, M.D., physiatrist at Michigan Head & Spine Institute. A warm up can consist of doing cardiovascular activities – such as walking or a light jog, or stretching the muscles that will be used during your chosen activity, before you begin. It’s always a good idea, when golfing or playing tennis, to take some practice swings to warm up those muscles that will be used during the activity.

At Michigan Head & Spine Institute, we have a team of physiatrists who specialize in getting you back to what you enjoy most in your life. The job of a physiatrist is to treat any disability resulting from disease or injury, from sore shoulders to spinal cord injuries. The focus is on the development of a comprehensive program – without surgery.

Here are the 5 top tips from our Physiatrists:

1. Warm up for at least 5-10 minutes before activity
2. Dress properly for your activity – shoes are extremely important. It’s sometime necessary to get fitted for the sport/activity that you enjoy most. Consider it an investment in your spine care.
3. Listen to your body – if you are feeling any pain, stop the activity immediately. Any spinal pain that is left untreated can worsen and become serious.
4. Take time for rest and recovery – don’t overexert certain muscle groups. If you’re the type that likes to stay active, try switching up your favorite activities. If you are an avid runner, try bicycling or swimming to give those muscles a rest.
5. Cool down and stretch – just as important as warming up, this helps with soreness the next day and brings your heart rate down to a comfortable rate.

Our main goal is that you know how to properly care for your body so that you can enjoy all of your favorite activities. But we are here for you for any pain you might be experiencing. There are many non-invasive treatment options that can help you so you can get back to the things you enjoy all year long. If you are experiencing pain now, please schedule an appointment, today.
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Current patients can now request to schedule or change an appointment through the patient portal and request prescription refills.