Let's pick running, but the same rules apply for any sport or exercise you may want to start engaging in.
To avoid an overuse injury or injury when you're first staring to run:
- Do not increase running mileage by more than 10% per week.
- Do not run more than 45 miles per week. There is little
evidence that running more than 45 miles per week improves your performance,
but a great deal of evidence shows that running more than 45 miles per week
increases your risk for an overuse injury.
- Do not run on slanted or uneven surfaces. The best running
surface is soft, flat terrain.
- Do not "run through pain." Pain is a sign that
should not be ignored, because it indicates that something is wrong.
- If you do have pain when you run, place ice on the area and
rest for 2 or 3 days. If the pain continues for 1 week, see your doctor.
- Follow hard training or running days with easy days.
- Change your running shoes every 500 miles. After this distance
shoes lose their ability to absorb the shock of running.