The average athlete in the UK who takes sport seriously will suffer from some sort of sport-related injury at one time or another. These may not render the person unable to do sport, but will affect in some way their ability to give it their best shot. The average British sports enthusiast will suffer from two specific instances each year which result in sport injury.
Sources of the problem
Sports injuries can be broadly broken down into two categories, those associated with trauma, or a specific incident resulting in an acute injury, and those associated with overuse or poor technique. Acute injuries typically include: fractures, internal injuries, sprains, dislocations, contusions and strains. Overuse injuries typically include: stress fracture, shin splints, runners’ knee, etc. Muscle imbalance in adolescents is a particular problem. In these cases, the muscle tissues grow more slowly than the bones, and often take time to catch up. This results in tight muscles, hamstring problems, problems with pectorals and neck muscles. Young people who do a lot of sports are particularly prone to these problems.
How it can be treated, and what to expect at the physiotherapy clinic
Whatever happens, trying to exercise away, or “run off” a sports injury is the last thing you should do. Aside from the first aid treatment you might require if an injury comes on very suddenly, clearly the next step is to receive an accurate diagnosis of the problem. We treat soft tissues and joint-related sports injuries from any sports. Typically, this will be from the initial, acute phase, through to final rehabilitation and full return to fitness. Aside from treating the injury itself, we can advise on warming up techniques, muscle imbalance and so on. We can correct these problems with a series of stretching and postural advice.
Working back to the notion of the two types of sports injuries, prevention revolves around reducing the risk of trauma injury by assessing the condition of the pitch and the playing surface, the condition of any safety equipment and the qualifications of any staff on hand. Prevention or limitation of overuse injuries requires looking at any external factors such as type of footwear used and running surface. Warming up before any sports can also lessen the impact of a traumatic injury.