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Medical and paramedical supervision and treatment of athletes. It has four aspects. Preparation (conditioning) uses diet, exercises, and monitoring of practice sessions to improve performance. Prevention identifies any predisposition to injury or illness and covers warmup, stretching, and design and use of protective equipment. Many surgical techniques developed in sports medicine, particularly for knee injuries, are now used for the general population. Rehabilitation (seephysical medicine and rehabilitation) prepares an injured or ill athlete to return to activity after initial treatment.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on sports medicine, visit Britannica.com.