The Fall Sports Season Begins Now

Summer vacation is upon us; time to relax, sleep-in, go on vacation, and, yes, begin training for fall sports! Here is som great advice from Dr. Amelia Wiggins, an orthopaedic surgeon and sports medicine specialist at Mercy Health who treats a variety of athletic injuries:

A break from sports is vital, because it allows your body to recover from nagging injuries; however, you should not ignore your fitness and training all summer long. Staying active during the off-season ensures you are prepared to participate in fall sports and remain injury free. Many injuries I see as a sports surgeon can be prevented with regular conditioning before the sports season starts. Injuries often occur when athletes suddenly increase the duration, intensity, or frequency of their activity.

To avoid injury, I recommend a balanced fitness program that incorporates aerobic exercise, strength training, and flexibility during the off-season. Ask your coach or athletic trainer for a program that will help you be better prepared for the fall season.

Don’t lose all your hard-earned fitness and start from the bottom when September comes. Start the fall sports season with a well-developed skill and fitness level!

Summer training tips to stay strong and healthy:

  • Warm up and stretch. Always take time to warm up and stretch, especially your hips, knees, thighs and calves. Research studies have shown that cold muscles are more prone to injury. Warm up with jumping jacks, running, or walking in place for 3 to 5 minutes. Then slowly and gently stretch, holding each stretch for 30 seconds.
  • Cool down and stretch. Stretching at the end of a training session is often neglected because of busy schedules. Take advantage of the lighter summer load and stretch to help reduce your risk for injury.
  • Hydrate. Dehydration happens fast in the summer heat and can be dangerous. General recommendations include: 24 ounces of non-caffeinated fluid 2 hours before exercise, an additional 8 ounces of water or sports drink right before exercise, and break for an 8 oz. cup of water every 20 minutes.

Sports Medicine Staff


battagliaAthletic Trainer Barbara Battaglia is a native of Chicago, and has a master’s degree in Developmental Kinesiology from Bowling Green University, and received her degree in Athletic Training in 2012 from Xavier University. While at BGSU, she worked primarily with the women’s basketball team and men’s and women’s golf teams. She also had responsibilities surrounding Falcon football. As an undergraduate at Xavier University, she worked with the Musketeers’ men’s basketball, women’s volleyball, tennis, track and cross country programs, and also gained experience working with the St. Xavier High School football team.


kyle hickeyAthletic Trainer Kyle Hickey is a 2013 graduate of the Xavier athletic training program, where he served as the primary athletic trainer for the women's soccer team. He also joined the sports medicine team as an intern athletic trainer in 2015. Prior to his return to Xavier, Hickey received his master's degree in sports administration from the University of New Mexico, where he served as a graduate assistant athletic trainer with primary team responsibility  with the women's soccer team, while assisting with sports medicine coverage for Lobo track and field, swimming and football. He also served as a preceptor for students in the athletic training program. Hickey is certified by the National Athletic Trainers Board and is a licensed athletic trainer in the state of Ohio. He is also a certified kinesiotape practitioner. Kyle currently resides in Cincinnati.


nayakDr. Suresh Nayak is the Turpin Athletics Team Physician from Wellington Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine and Mercy Health. He has been striving for excellence in Orthopaedic Surgery since 1995. His practice involves Sports Medicine and Joint Replacement surgery. This includes arthroscopic surgery of the hip, knee and shoulder. Surgeries include, for the hip: labral repair, FAI surgery. Shoulder: rotator cuff repair; instability reconstruction, SLAP lesion repair. Knee: meniscal repair, ligament reconstruction. Cartilage preservation procedures are also a keen interest. In joint reconstruction, state of the art procedures such as Anterior Approach Total Hip Replacement, Hip Resurfacing and Computer Navigated Total Knee Replacement are routine. Shoulder replacement surgery proceeds from Hemi-cap to Total Shoulder Replacement and includes the Reverse Ball and Socket, Delta prosthesis.These surgeries are married with the latest techniques in post surgery pain management protocols and with Implants that have proven longevity.