Did you know that more than 50% of youth sports injuries are overuse injuries? With such an emphasis put upon concussions as of late, parents and athletic officials alike have begun to neglect injury prevention in extremities and student athletes have suffered as a result.
What’s an Overuse Injury?
Injuries are commonly classified under two categories: acute and overuse injuries. Acute injuries are a result of sudden and singular traumas such as fractures, sprains, or dislocations. Overuse injuries are damage to bones, ligaments, muscles, or tendons due to long-term, repeated stress without allowing the body to heal.
Common overuse injuries include:
– Shin splints
– Runner’s knee
– Tennis elbow
– Carpal tunnel syndrome
Preventing Overuse Injuries in Youth Sports
Education – Athletes, coaches, and parents must all know the symptoms of overuse injuries. A list of common warning signs is available here. Furthermore, athletes should notify an adult or coach if they experience symptoms of overuse injuries.
Examination – Before engaging in an athletic activity, student athletes should undergo a comprehensive physical examination that tests for conditioning, flexibility, muscular imbalances, and psychological issues among other conditions. A Functional Movement Assessment is a good first step in identifying and treating muscular imbalances that can cause overuse injuries.
Training – Proper training and conditioning before, during, and after sports seasons will help athletes keep a regular, stable level of fitness to promote healthy and safe participation in athletics. By keeping a baseline level of flexibility, range of movement, muscular balance, and conditioning, the chances of an overuse injury occurring during athletic events can be offset substantially.
If you’re concerned about your student athlete developing overuse injuries as a result of their participation in sports, contact Velo Sports Rehab. A Functional Movement Assessment may help identify potential issues that may aggravate or cause debilitating overuse injuries that will have prolonged impacts on health and general wellbeing long after their athletic days are done. Make an appointment today by using the contact form or calling our offices in Bellevue, Washington at 425-590-9208.
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