Sports Injuries

Here at Merivale Physiotherapy Clinic we understand the importance of ‘giving your body the best of care’. Caring for your body allows you to stay active. Whichever way you enjoy being active, we will endeavour to help you return to your sporting activities as quickly as possible.

Sports injuries can occur in every athlete including weekend warriors, social players and elite performance athletes. It is best to get your injury assessed as soon as possible to ensure it heals properly.

There are two main ways in which sports injuries can occur, either in an acute accident or over an extended period of time. The athlete may experience an acute incident as a result of physical contact, a fall or knock. For example an ankle sprain when landing and rolling the ankle at netball. In the acute stages your ankle requires rest. Trying to push through pain may cause further injury.

Follow these two acronyms:

Do RICE- rest, ice, compress (using a compression bandage to reduce swelling), elevate.

Do not HARM- heat, alcohol, running/exercising, massage?

Some injuries can also develop over time

This may be the result of overloading the tissues with poor training technique or over-training. To avoid injury make sure you listen to your body and ensure when starting the season or building up to a big event that your program reflects your anticipated work load.

Sports injuries must be managed carefully with a graduated return to play to avoid re-injury. It is important we perform a full assessment after an injury to ensure that another body part isn't compensating for the injury. This sort of compensation can create a muscle imbalance or asymmetry which cause other injuries.

The majority of sports injuries are to the head, shoulders, hamstrings, knees and ankles (ACC, 2015). Different types of injuries are more common in different sports depending of the different physical demands on the body.

For example shoulder injuries are common in swimmers and volley ball players, lower back pain in rowers and cricket bowlers and knee injuries in skiers and football players. Don't let a niggle get in the way of your sport. Seek treatment early to avoid bad habits.