Strengthen Core To Avoid Sports Injuries

In an effort to provide care for injured athletes on the weekends, Straub Bone & Joint Center recently opened a sports injury clinic to the public from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. each Saturday at Straub (King Street and Pearlridge).

“The idea came about because so many athletes, especially in football, were getting injured and not having access to care,” says Dr. Nick Crawford, orthopedic surgeon at Straub Clinic & Hospital. “Kids of all ages, from Pop Warner to high school, instead of going to the ER, they would come here.”

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Tammy Edwards shows a hip flexor stretch. Drop one knee down, and thrust your pelvis forward. "By pushing the pelvis down, she's stretching the hip flexor and the quadriceps," explains Dr. Crawford. Hold for 8 seconds, then switch sides. Do a set of three for each side. NATHALIE WALKER PHOTOS

According to Crawford, the most common injuries they see are ankle sprains, shoulder dislocations and knee ligament injuries. “As a pilot program, we started it during football season, but the idea was to have this every weekend for all sports in Hawaii,” adds Crawford. “People play sports year round because the weather is so nice.”

As a preventative measure, Crawford suggests that athletes strengthen their core with regular exercise and stretches. “Strengthening a connection between the lumbar spine and your pelvis has been shown to decrease a lot of injuries,” he says. Here, some of Straub’s staff members demonstrate key exercises and stretches for your core, hip flexor and balance.