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Top 5 Common Sports Injuries and How to Avoid Them

From broken bones to strains and sprains- sports injuries are more common than you think. However, there are steps that you can take to reduce the chances of causing injury to yourself. Below we’ve put together a list of 5 common sports injuries and how to avoid them.

  1. Sprains and Strains

Sprains and strains are very common injuries that affect muscles and ligaments. These often occur when you overstretch or twist a muscle. Whilst they are painful, they can be easily treated. For example, you should rest, use ice to reduce any swelling and elevate the injury and support it with something soft like a cushion. Ensuring that you warm up and wear the correct footwear can also reduce the risk of this common injury.

  1. Achilles Tear

Also known as Achilles tendinitis, this injury is very common amongst runners. It happens when the Achilles tendon (at the back of your ankle) is overused and becomes inflamed and painful. Before you start any form of exercise you should first stretch your muscles, this helps to ease them into high-intensity activities. Following your work-out, you should also spend at least 10 minutes cooling down. Take a look at our latest blog post for warming up and cooling down exercises.

  1. Shin Splints

Shin splints are caused by increased stress on your shinbone and the tissues connecting muscles to the bone. When you exercise, these tissues become inflamed which can be painful. If you feel any discomfort, you should stop the activity and give your legs time to recover. One way to avoid this is to wear proper shoes and ensuring that you stretch your calf muscles before exercise. You can also try different types of exercises such as swimming and walking, both of which put less stress on your leg muscles.

  1. Tennis/Golfer’s Elbow

Also known as lateral epicondylitis, tennis elbow is caused by overusing the muscles and tendons in your forearms through repetitive or strenuous activity. The name is misleading, although it can be caused by playing tennis, it’s also a common injury amongst tradesmen such as carpenters and plumbers.  One way to prevent this type of injury is to warm up your wrists, elbows and upper arms, this can be achieved by doing wrist turns and elbow bends.  It also helps to strengthen the muscles in your forearm which in turn will improve function. If you suffer from tennis elbow you should rest, use ice to reduce inflammation and seek professional medical advice if the pain does not subside.

  1. Back Injuries

Most back injuries in sport are sprains of ligaments or strains of muscles in the back. These injuries are most common in sports like running, golf and tennis. However, they can be prevented by avoiding uneven surfaces when running, wearing good quality running shoes and by stretching your leg and lower back muscles before and after exercise.

Getting an injury when playing sports can be painful, but these simple tips can help you to prevent them. What are your top tips for avoiding common sports injuries? Please share your comments with us on our Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.