What is RICE?

Rice is an easy way of remembering how to treat an injury immediately after it has happened.

Rest is the first thing. Stop the athlete from performing sport and immobilize the injury.

Ice should be applied as soon as possible to the affected area to help relieve pain and reduce swelling caused by bleeding and fluid loss. Ice should be applied for about 15 minutes every few hours during the first 24 to 48 hours, but place a thin towel between skin and ice to prevent ice burn.

Compression is used to control swelling. Wrap a bandage or whatever you can find to do the job, around the injury and wrap it firmly but not tightly. Check now and again to make sure the bandage is not too tight.

Elevation also helps to reduce swelling. Raise the injured limb above heart level for the first 48 hours because even the effect of gravity can cause fluid from the injured area to be released and slow down the healing process, as does movement, which is why it is important to rest the limb.