The most common exercise/ fitness related injuries and what you can do to prevent them
What Are Sports Injuries?
The term “sports injury,” in the broadest sense, refers to the kinds of injuries that most commonly occur during sports or exercise. In juries related to exercise/sport can happen to anyone, independently of no your experience or level of fitness level. Some sports injuries result from accidents; others are due to poor training practices, improper equipment, lack of conditioning, or insufficient warm-up and stretching.
Some of the most common types of exercise/sports Injuries are:
• Muscle sprains and strains
o A sprain is a stretch or tear of a ligament, the band of connective tissues that joins the end of one bone with another. Sprains usually happen when a person falls, twists, or is hit in a way that forces the body out of its normal position. The most common type of sprain is a sprained ankle
o A strain is a twist, pull, or tear of a muscle or tendon, a cord of tissue connecting muscle to bone. It is an acute, noncontact injury that results from overstretching or overcontraction. Athletes in contact sports, like football, hockey, and boxing, are at particularly high risk for strains. Frequent repetitive motions, like those used in tennis, rowing, and golf, can lead to strains of the hand and forearm.
• Tears of the ligaments that hold joints together
o Ligament injuries in athletes are common and can occur at any joint. The knee and ankle are particularly vulnerable but it is sport specific.
• Tears of the tendons that support joints and allow them to move
o the most common cause of tendon tears is a problem called tendinitis, a degenerative condition caused most frequently by overuse. When a tendon is weakened, trauma can cause it to rupture.
• Dislocated joints
o the joints most likely to be dislocated are some of the hand joints. Aside from these joints, the joint most frequently dislocated is the shoulder. Dislocations of the knees, hips, and elbows are uncommon.
• Fractured bones, including vertebrae.
o A fracture is a break in the bone that can occur from either a quick, one-time injury to the bone (acute fracture) or from repeated stress to the bone over time (stress fracture).
Regardless of the specific structure affected, musculoskeletal sports injuries can generally be classified in one of two ways: acute or chronic.
Acute injuries are typically caused by a single traumatic event, high speed (eg, soccer) or full-body contact (eg, football, wrestling).
Acute injuries, such as a sprained ankle, strained back, or fractured hand, occur suddenly during activity. Signs of an acute injury include the following:
• sudden, severe pain
• inability to place weight on a lower limb
• extreme tenderness in an upper limb
• inability to move a joint through its full range of motion
• extreme limb weakness
• visible dislocation or break of a bone.
Chronic injuries usually result from overusing one area of the body while playing a sport or exercising over a long period. Overuse injuries are often found in low-contact sports that involve long training sessions or the same movement repeated numerous times (eg, long-distance running, rowing, swimming).4–7 So they typically stems from training errors (too much physical activity too quickly) and/or improper technique.
The following are signs of a chronic injury:
• pain when performing an activity
• a dull ache when at rest
Here are some recommendations for avoiding injuries during your workout:
• Every workout should begin with a warm-up and end with a cool-down period. Do warm-up exercise not just before vigorous activities like running, but also before less vigorous ones such as golf.
Don’t overdo. Especially, when you begin an exercise routine or start a new workout program, start slowly. Then gradually build up the intensity, duration, and frequency.
• Use the softest exercise surface available, and avoid running on hard surfaces like asphalt. Run on flat surfaces. Running uphill may increase the stress on the Achilles tendon and the leg itself.
• Wear properly fitting shoes that provide shock absorption and stability.
Treating Workout Injuries
Injuries can happen, no matter how careful you are. If you develop a workout injury, follow the RICE method to keep your injury from getting worse:
• R: Rest the injury.
• I: Ice the injury to lessen swelling, bleeding, and inflammation.
• C: Apply a compression bandage to minimize swelling.
• E: Elevate the injury, if possible, to reduce swelling.
Most workout injuries will heal on their own in 4 weeks or less. If the injury has not improved within a week, or if it gets worse, seek medical care. And always use common sense. If you're concerned about the injury, it's best to seek medical advice.