Sports Injuries and Your Off Season

sports injuriesPlaying sports can leave you open to a broad range of injuries that can cause long term problems and affect your performance. And while prevention through training in good condition and wearing appropriate protection is always the best option, injury can still occur. When it does, it’s essential to get the right treatment at the right time; your off season is the best time to consider your options if you want to prevent further injury and encourage full recovery.

Off season rest

Rest is an important aspect of recovery from sports injuries to any of the major joints. Rest does not mean doing nothing and allowing the joint to become stiff. Taking this approach will make the injury worse over the long term. Resting the affected area involves not doing any strenuous exercise and only gradually building up the amount of movement in that area. For example, a knee or foot injury may require a short period of complete rest followed by short periods of gentle walking, the time and intensity of which is increased over time.

Physiotherapy

While gentle exercise can be undergone without support, undertaking the wrong exercises can make matters much worse. It is important to gain expert support and advice on the best exercises and their intensity for your particular injury. Physiotherapy, including hydrotherapy, can minimize recovery time and strengthen the affected area, thus cutting down on the risk of re-injury. It can help assess the type and range of movements in the affected joints, thus ensuring that you are using the joint correctly and are not opening yourself up to further injury through bad posture or technique.

Surgery

There are sports injuries that do not respond to either of these treatments. In these cases, the only answer may be surgery. While surgery should not be undertaken lightly, it also shouldn’t be put off if your medical practitioner believes it is the best option. Putting surgery off can lead to the injury getting worse and increasing the chance of long term performance damage. This is a particular problem with shoulder injuries including rotator cuff damage.

 

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