With the ending of winter and the beginning of the warmer months, many parents are preparing their children – and maybe themselves – for spring and summer sports. However, because the previous months were mostly spent in school or at home away from the cold outdoors, many children might not be used to the physical exertion that spring or summer sports require. This is why sports physicals are so important – to catch common injuries before they occur. Here are a few injuries that often occur during sports.
Perhaps the most common injury for athletes and non-athletes alike, a sprained ankle is as ubiquitous as it is inconvenient. While it usually isn’t as painful or long-lasting as a broken bone, it is still an injury that most people will want to avoid. An ankle sprain usually happens when the foot turns too far inward. This angle pulls and possibly tears the ligaments surrounding the ankle joint. These ligaments are already quite weak, so a sprain is no difficult feat.
To prevent a sprained ankle, take time to stretch your ankles, rotating them in circles. Stretching the ligaments will give them more flexibility so they’re much less likely to tear even when the foot is over-turned.
If the sprained ankle seems to be taking a long time to heal, visit a doctor for a quick check. If you are experiencing a “high ankle sprain,” where the pain is usually just above the ankle, you should check in with your doctor to make sure the bones aren’t separated.
Sports like soccer, football, baseball, and hockey are highly conducive to the groin pull. This happens when the player uses his legs to push off in a side-to-side motion – think of an ice-skater gliding left, then right, then left. This abnormal motion will negatively impact weak groin muscles.
Again, to prevent injury, flexibility is key. Pulls, sprains, and strains often occur because muscles and ligaments are too tight, leading to snapping.
If you have experienced a groin pull and given it substantial ice and rest, you should be seen by your physician. This is especially important if there is any swelling present.
Achilles Tendon Rupture
The Achilles tendon is located at the back of your ankle and essentially connects your foot to your leg. In sports, the tendon often gets overstretched, which could lead to it snapping.
You might be sensing a pattern for injury prevention – some good stretching. The Achilles tendon will be much stronger and less likely to snap if it is regularly (gently) stretched before playing sports. Building the calf muscles may also help.
If you think you’ve ruptured or snapped your Achilles tendon, you should see a doctor immediately. If you are experiencing persistent pain, this is a good sign that you should seek professional medical assistance.
Walk-In Sports Injury Treatment in Bound Brook, NJ
As mentioned above, getting a sports physical before starting the season will help make sure your bones, joints, ligaments, and tendons are in good playing condition to limit potential injury. If you want to make sure you, or your kids, are ready to play, stop into AFC Urgent Care Bound Brook for a walk-in physical that will get you on a team in no time. For questions, please call 732-469-3627.