Summer is an enjoyable time of year, filled with lots of sun and fun. In general, the warm weather encourages you to relax and enjoy the outdoors. The outdoors can also be risky for a variety of reasons, potentially leading to a span of injuries. To avoid a trip to your local clinic, urgent care, or hospital, please keep in mind the following safety tips:
1. Warm Up
Be sure to warm up before engaging in any physical activities. Simply perform a few stretches (with proper form and guidance) before you head outside, as stretching can help improve your flexibility.
2. Wear Protective Equipment
If you plan on participating in competitive sports, mountain bike, etc., then you should be aware that protective gear is essential in preventing injuries. Be sure to wear the gear appropriate for the activity. For instance, if you’re playing soccer, then wear shin guards and properly-fitted cleats. Biking? Wear a high-quality helmet. Without this equipment, you would be risking severe injury and possible death.
3. Keep Hydrated
The heat can be both your friend and foe. There are times that the heat can cause severe dehydration, but that can be avoided if you drink fluids throughout the day.
After all, according to the EPA, over 9,000 Americans have died from heat-related causes between 1979 and 2013. Furthermore, there has been an increase in the number of heat stroke deaths since 2000.
So, start by hydrating before you head outdoors or do any physical activity, but be sure to continue your fluid intake throughout the day.
4. Wear Proper Foot Gear
While summertime is the perfect time for flip-flops, many types of flip-flops tend to cause a variety of foot injuries, including inflammation of the tissue along the bottom of the foot, arthritis, and bunions. When you are out shopping for flip-flops, choose a pair that features arch support. Furthermore, limit your time in wearing these flip-flops.
Alternatively, consider sandals, espadrilles, or open-toe flats.
5. Strengthen Your Muscles
Particularly, you should strengthen your core muscles, such as the abdominals and the lower back, so that you decrease the risk of physical injuries. Exercises that focus on core muscles are planks, squats, leg raises, and crunches. If you have a physical condition that affects these muscles, then be sure to consult your doctor or physical therapist before performing these workouts.
6. Consider the Pool Rules
Pools go hand-in-hand with the summer weather, but they are considered to be hazardous, so much so that they are dubbed an “attractive nuisance” in the insurance industry, meaning that not only do they attract children, but they pose a threat to the child if unsupervised.
There are a few general rules to consider when using a pool:
- Do not run near the pool, as you could slip and injure yourself.
- Never dive into the shallow end of the pool.
- Stay away from pool covers.
- Keep the children under constant supervision.
- Place a safety gate around the perimeter of your pool to prevent drowning accidents involving young children.
- Don’t push others into the pool.
- Encourage children to not play rough or show off near the pool.