What I love most about playing chess is that it keeps my mind working. It is also not a physically demanding sport which can also make you more prone to accidents, injuries or foot sprains. At times, I watch softball games in the television, and oftentimes I see some athletes being assisted out of the field because of sprained foot or injuries. That is something I don’t like to happen to me. That is why I would rather play chess than any physical sport.
However, if you are engaged in a physical sport like softball, baseball, lawn tennis, soccer or running, there are ways on how you can decrease your risk of suffering from sprains and other foot injuries:
1. Warm up before the start of the game.
Regardless of the type of sports activity you play, warm-ups should always be a part of your routine. Warm-up exercises may include stretching, jogging or bending for about five minutes before the start of your actual practice or game. A good warm-up exercise can help gradually increase your blood circulation and heart rate as well as prepare your stamina for physical exertion during actual play.
2. Do not push yourself too much during the game.
If it is your first time to play a certain sport, don’t force yourself to do certain moves that experienced players normally do. The amount of time you spend on practice or play as well as the level of difficulty that you do should gradually increase over a period of time and not suddenly. Gradual training helps you develop your muscle mobility and strength without too much pressure which may result to sprains or in worse cases, develop into a sinus tarsi syndrome.
3. Use the right shoes for your sport and foot type.
Athletes who have low arches should use shoes that have front and under-the-arch support for more balance and stability. On the other hand, if your feet have high arches, the most ideal shoes for you are those with softer platforms and more cushions. Although cross-training shoes are generally okay for any type of sport, it is best to choose shoes that are designed for your kind of sport.
4. Avoid running or playing on uneven surfaces.
If you are a runner, be careful about running on a hilly or rocky terrain especially if the surface has loose gravel. Runners are prone to foot injuries if they run on unpaved surfaces. It is best to slow down when you are running on an unpaved surface.
5. Listen to your body.
If you are starting to feel some pain on your foot, stop what you are doing and rest for a while until the pain subsides. If you have a recurrent injury in the ankle, using a tape or brace may help you prevent the injury from recurring.
While observing these tips can help you avoid injury or foot sprains, the risk will still be there. Treatment normally varies depending on the severity of your condition. If you really want to totally avoid these problems, you could instead engage in other sports like chess. I strongly recommend this safer sport because of its many mental benefits.