CHEVY CHASE, Md. (WUSA9)--Lacrosse, soccer, baseball... spring sports teams are in playoff mode, while summer tryouts are already beginning.
Dr. J.R. Rudzki is an orthopaedic surgeon with Sibley Memorial Hospital who emphasizes injury prevention through stretching and strengthening key muscle groups and tendons.
Dr. Rudzki says, "Our soccer players, runners, young athletes, they are growing actively and their hamstrings can be tight. And when they get into cleats and start running around, they have heel pain."
Dr. Rudzki wants athletes to focus on stretching their heels at least twice a day, with a runner's lunge up against a wall. He says, "That's something they can do at home with their parents, in the morning before breakfast and after dinner before bed."
Physical therapist Patrick "Packy" Kennelly uses a volunteer to demonstrate another great stretch to keep the hamstrings loose. This is a good exercise for softball, baseball and lacrosse players who are scooping the ball off the ground. Kennelly advocates dynamic instead of static stretch, incorporating movements from the playing field into your stretching routine.
You can watch this demonstration and others in the attached video of Anita Brikman's Health Alert on Sports Injury Prevention.