Most Common Sports Injuries (And How to Avoid Them)

While many athletes do get injured, there are things you can do to avoid getting hurt so you can stay on the field.

Getting injured is always a possibility when playing sports. Despite that, there are actions you can take to limit your vulnerability. In this blog, Wade McKenna, DO, at McKenna Orthopedics, explains what the most common sports injuries are and the things you can do to stay as injury-free as possible.

If you do get injured, Dr. McKenna and his team can help. Dr. McKenna is a world-renowned orthopedic surgeon, and he’ll work with you to get you back on the field as soon as possible.

Overuse injuries

Most injuries don’t occur in a vacuum. While some acute injuries are unavoidable — such as landing on someone’s foot after a jump — many injuries result from a combination of bad techniques, training errors, and pushing your body too hard. Overuse opens the door to more acute injuries. This is especially true for injuries that involve muscles, tendons, and ligaments. Some of the most common injuries include:

By following the tips below, you can help prevent the likelihood of getting injured. Use these basics guidelines whenever you play sports to ensure that your time spent exercising is safe and fun.

Stretch it out

Stretching can be the key to avoiding Achilles injuries, ankle sprains, and muscle strains. Athletes use their Achilles tendon a lot in sports where there is a lot of running and jumping, such as soccer, football, and basketball. Situated at the back of your ankle, it’s essential to a lot of basic movements. A good strength and flexibility regimen will help protect your Achilles tendon from tendonitis and tears.

Stretching can also help you prevent getting fractures. Your ligaments, tendons, and muscles are all interconnected, and they help your bones move in concert. By limbering up, you can help everything work well together.

Use proper equipment

While your equipment doesn’t need to be the most expensive, sports-specific equipment is worth the purchase. For example, soccer cleats are traditionally round to avoid injuring other players, and baseball cleats are more rectangular. While you may be able to play a baseball game in soccer cleats, most soccer leagues ban baseball cleats.

With running shoes, they’re primarily designed to cushion your feet, and basketball shoes are primarily designed to protect your ankles and cushion your feet. While you may be able to run with basketball shoes, playing basketball with running shoes could leave you vulnerable to getting injured.

Even something as simple as a properly strung tennis racquet could help protect you against tendonitis or tennis elbow.

Technique matters

Muscle strains often occur because of misuse. When you use the wrong muscles to perform an action, you may pull your body in unnatural ways.

Proper technique is key when playing any sport. Work with a trainer or pro to make sure you’re doing things the right way. No sport should ever be painful to play. Spending a little bit of time on technique can go a long way.

Listen to your body

It’s fine to feel a little achy, sore, or tired after a hard-fought game. But chronic pain and chronic tenderness are not fine. Playing through the pain may make you more prone to a serious injury. If you’re experiencing pain, difficulty putting weight on a foot, a limited range of motion, or extreme bruising and redness, you should see Dr. McKenna.

If you get injured, or if you want to learn more ways to help prevent getting injured, book an appointment online or over the phone with McKenna Orthopedics today.

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