Sports Injuries and Physical Therapy
We all know what sports injuries are. They are, quite simply, injuries that occur while playing sports or while participating in exercise/fitness activities. While the definition may be simple, sports injuries are actually a BIG deal. Within the last year, more than 1.35 million of us had sports related injuries that were serious. Serious enough to cut an otherwise promising sports career short, and sideline athletes for games, seasons, and even a lifetime. Unfortunately, someone sidelined and injured was my daughter.
She suffered an ACL tear and meniscus injury. Her twin sister along with 4 other girls from the same school followed with the same injury in the same year. This indicates a strange epidemic caused by poor readiness for sports. Their injuries required surgical repair, grafting and long months of painful recovery and rehabilitation. Taking care of my injured girls made me look closer into sports injury prevention and rehabilitation. I learned a lot about sports injury during that time. I wished I had known sooner since it could have saved my twins from months of debilitating pain.
What is the Common Cause of Sports Injuries?
Even though some sports injuries are complete accidents, most of them are a result of poor alignment, muscle imbalance, deconditioning, poor training practices or improper gear. Most people get injured because their body is not in the proper condition for the activity they are attempting. Even not warming up or stretching enough before you play a sport or exercise can lead to a sports injury.
How to prevent sports injuries?
Some simple measures such us incorporating rest periods, wearing proper gear, stretching before and after the game, proper warming, exercise technique and hydration can spare you the pain and healing time that comes along with a sports injury.
In addition to this, I advise to incorporate following:
- Use arch support to control foot pronation to prevent knee, ankle and back injuries. A flat foot position commonly causes plantar fasciitis, shin splints, anterior knee pain and low back pain.
- Strengthen to stabilize and make joints stiffer since being super flexible is not necessary a good thing. Knee hyperextension is associated with ACL tears and knee overuse injuries.
- Improve alignment: Poor alignment is decreasing neuromuscular control and increasing risk for injury; anterior pelvic tilt is associated with hamstring strains, anterior knee pain and low back pain. A forward head position is associated with headaches, thoracic outlet syndrome, shoulder instability, RTC impingement, and biceps tendonitis.
The good news is that sports injuries can easily be preventable and treatable! Here, at Lilly Physical Therapy in Edmonds WA, we have developed a special Injury Free Champions program that includes a detailed assessment to determine the level of potential risk in relationship with the sports of choice and highly effective intervention. Benefits of our program include eliminating risk of injury, normalizing and improving function, speed, agility and performance. We use cutting edge technology, advanced manual work and evidence based kinetic intervention and our patients love it.
Special offer: Wed 6-7 open sports clinic $19 for injury risk and treatment assessment.