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Top 10 Sports Injuries for Athletes

Top 10 Sports Injuries for Athletes

Sports injuries are common, especially in physically intensive contact sports. They can occur when you overexert yourself or they can occur if you move the wrong way or make contact with another athlete. Even with differences among sports, there are common injuries that can occur. Fortunately, many sports injuries can be treated effectively with physical therapy. Seeking physical therapy from Desert Edge Physical Therapy in Peoria can help you recover from your sports injury so you can get back to playing. In this article, we’ll go over the top 10 sports injuries for athletes to be on the lookout for.

1. Knee Injuries

We’ve given the knee its own category for potential injuries because it’s a very intricate joint that takes a lot of force and wear throughout most sporting activities. Along with cartilage rips, fractures, and dislocations, anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tears are fairly typical injuries. Knee injuries are frequently treated with surgery since they can be extremely painful and debilitating. Once more, correct cushioning and bracing, coupled with warm-ups, stretches, and excellent posture can lower the risk of knee injury (for instance, while playing contact sports). 

Many sports are hard on the knees because the legs keep you moving on the field or court. There are few sports that don’t involve using your knees. Unfortunately, that means sports can be hard on the knees. Any sport that involves running, jumping, and twisting or turning can lead to knee injuries. Since you have to use your knees to walk and move so often, even minor sports injuries can easily be exacerbated and take longer to heal. Minor injuries can even become more serious if you don’t get help when the injury occurs. 

2. Shoulder Injuries

Shoulder injuries are also common in sports activities in Peoria, Arizona. Though knees are used to move and jump and twist, shoulders are used to move the arms. Any sport that includes a ball that needs to be caught, thrown, or carried, as well as any equipment held in the hands, requires shoulder muscles. However, when using your arms in sports, it can be easy to overextend, collide with another player, or twist the wrong way, leading to a shoulder injury. These can be particularly painful, as pain can radiate down the arm or into the back.

3. Hamstring Strain

Hamstrings, located at the back of the thigh, are instrumental in running and jumping. However, they can often be tight, which makes them vulnerable to injuries. While strains can be easily treated and healed with physical therapy, more serious injuries, such as hamstring tear, may take more intensive treatment plans. A hamstring strain can be very painful and keep you off the field until it has completely healed. Getting treatment early can help you heal more quickly and prevent complications.

4. Shin Splints

Shin splints typically occur in athletes who are runners or who do sports with a lot of running. The pain they feel radiates down their shins, making it painful to walk or run. Many athletes experience shin splints early in their sports seasons. After being off, they may get back into training and practice too quickly, which causes shin splints to occur. Shin splints can keep you from continuing your training and practice until you get treatment, making early diagnosis and treatment essential.

These conditions are categorized as repetitive stress injuries since they both involve excessive foot and leg movement coupled with inadequate support. An inflamed tendon in the foot’s arch is called plantar fasciitis, and it hurts to walk. Shin splints are a term used to describe an inflammation of the lower leg muscles brought on by constant strain and hard impacts from running, dodging, or abrupt stops and starts. Both are typical among joggers, runners, soccer, and basketball players. The two most effective preventatives are appropriate stretches and periodic rest.

5. Groin Pull

The groin muscles are found on the inner thighs, running vertically from the upper-inner thigh to the knee. They are used in side-to-side movements and, like hamstrings, can be tight. That can make them vulnerable to pulls and strains. Because these muscles work to move the legs together and apart, they are used often in daily life, even when not training or doing sports. This can make a groin pull very painful and the hot Arizona sun can exacerbate this pain as well. Getting treatment for a groin pull will help heal and strengthen the muscle as well as loosen it. That makes it less vulnerable to re-injury once you are finished with recovery.

6. Strains 

Because we engage so many muscles and tendons when we play or exercise, strains are by far the most frequent of all sports-related ailments. All of these moving parts are prone to stretching further than they need to or moving improperly, which can cause pain, damage, and tearing. Pulling the groin muscles, straining the quads, and pulling the hamstrings are common muscular injuries. The majority of sprains are minor and naturally disappear with rest. Before engaging in any strenuous exercise, it is best to warm up and stretch to lower the risk of strained muscles and tendons. 

7. Sprains

Similar to how strains affect muscles, sprains affect ligaments. The tissues that join one bone to another are called ligaments. These ligaments may strain or tear if they turn in the wrong direction. Perhaps the most common type of sprain among athletes is the ankle, followed closely by knee, wrist, elbow, etc. Sprains can hurt, take longer to recover than strains, and occasionally need to be immobilized to prevent further damage. Stretching and warming up before a workout can help prevent sprains, as can using proper technique in the sport you’re playing. If you have a history of spraining a knee or ankle, for example, it would be a good idea to support that joint because sprains frequently leave the ligament weak and vulnerable to subsequent sprains.

8. Breakages

Impact and contact sports frequently result in bone fractures (most commonly in the arms, legs, and feet), all of which can be painful, require weeks of immobility to heal, and are occasionally corrected surgically. Most demanding sports carry an inherent risk of fractures, but you can lower it by using the right protection, warming up, exercising to keep your muscles strong and flexible, using proper technique, etc. Additionally, avoid “playing through the pain,” as this may indicate a strain or sprain that, if left untreated, might weaken the bone and render it susceptible to fracture.

9. Tennis elbow

Tennis elbow can develop even if you don’t play the sport (golf is also a common culprit). Tennis elbow is one of many “injuries of repetition,” which are strained elbow ligaments brought on by excessive and repetitive use. Pace yourself if you want to avoid it. Take breaks, engage in other things, and stretch and warm up before playing every time.

10. Back pain and injuries

With practically every sport, your back and spinal column experience some level of stress. This stress may build up over time into inflammation around the vertebrae and back muscles, occasionally inflicting disc damage and frequently resulting in upper or lower back discomfort. Occasionally, a sudden, jarring hit can also seriously hurt the back. Depending on the problem, back treatments might range considerably from rest to physical therapy to surgery. The best method to lower your chance of back discomfort and injury is to maintain strong, flexible back muscles with frequent low-impact exercise, warm-ups, and even a healthy diet.

Understanding Sports Injuries for Athletes

Whether you’ve suffered one of these common sports injuries or another injury during training, practice, or a game, physical therapy is a non-invasive treatment approach that can help you heal from your injury and strengthen your muscles before you get back to the game. Call Desert Edge Physical Therapy in Peoria to make an appointment today.

published on Sunday, August 21st, 2022