As the weather warms up, more and more activities become available to us and spring leagues start to take off! With people hopping back into their volleyball, softball, and flag football teams we unfortunately see a surge in injuries. There are several reasons and causes to these injuries. Some may be traumatic in nature, where an individual has a fall, an awkward and unexpected movement, or even something colliding or hitting your body.
Some of the common injuries that can be seen on the courts and fields may include:
Sprains: Caused by stretching or tearing of a ligament within or around a joint that leads to pain, swelling, bruising and you may have difficulty weight-bearing on that joint
Strains and tendonitis: Excessive stretching or tearing of a muscle which often occurs with explosive movements, or quick and suddenly directional changes.
Bone fractures: Typically seen with falling or diving for the ball in which a person experiences excessive force through joints and bones.
Dislocations: This can happen when bones are pulled too far apart with in a joint. Sometimes this can occur through a traction force that pulls, such as an arm being pulled
Low back pain: very common from getting into new activities from being in unaccustomed positions with force or or carrying load
Shoulder/elbow pain: Often seen with pitchers and throwers, poor shoulder mobility and/or weakness can cause muscles and tendons surrounding the shoulder to get irritated.
Why does this occur?
There may be several reasons as to why some may experience these issues and injuries while others may not. In the case where the injury is not from a traumatic event, over the winter season, some individuals become less active which can lead to a slow and gradual loss in muscular strength, endurance, and flexibility. As these changes occur as a result of decreased use and activity, the involved structures experience a higher level of stress during warm-weather activities. These new stresses slowly take a toll on the soft tissues (muscles, tendons, etc.) and at some point the added stress turns into an inflammatory process and lead to injury.
What can be done?
Upon experiencing an injury, our physical therapist can perform an examination to determine your deficits and evaluate the cause of your pains in order to create an appropriate plan of care to return you to crushing it on the field.
But why wait till you get injured?
Our therapist can also perform evaluation and movement analysis to determine deficits that you may not realize you have acquired over the course of winter through inactivity. Our therapist can create a plan of care with an individualized home exercise program to address your limitations to prevent an injury from occurring in the first place.
We want to see you at your BEST and your best is injury FREE! Come schedule an evaluation and tackle those spring activities!