Sports Injuries & How to Avoid Them
by Renee LeGros
What are some major Sport-Related Injuries?
TORN ACL (ANTERIOR CRUCIATE LIGAMENT)
What is it?
A Torn ACL is a second- to third-degree sprain which causes the knee to become unstable, buckle, or fail when pressure is applied as the leg is planted on the ground or when attempting to stop or make sudden turns.
Recovery from a torn ACL usually consists of a surgical repair of the ligament and anywhere from 6-9 months of rehabilitation with a physical therapist. Few people suffer lifelong damage to the knee after tearing the ACL, however more than one tear increases the risk of permanent knee damage.
How does one tear the ACL?
A tear of the ACL can also be caused if the tibia is pushed forward against the femur or vice versa. This can happen due to heavy falls, direct impact to the front of the knee area while the foot is planted, or during a car wreck.
How can we prevent an ACL tear?
Hip Flexor Strain
What is it?
Recovery can take anywhere from 1 week to 6 or more weeks, depending on the severity of the sprain or tear. Recovery tends to involve plenty of rest, strengthening exercise, and physical therapy in more severe cases of tears.
How does one strain their Hip Flexor Muscle(s)?
A Grade 1 Tear is when only a small number of muscle fibers are torn, leaving the individual with some pain, but full motion.
Grade 2 Tears consist of a sizable amount of muscle fibers being torn, causing a loss of some range of motion of the leg.
Grade 3 Tears are when all fibers are damaged or torn resulting in the loss of all or most of the individual's range of motion
How can we prevent a Hip Flexor Strain?
Preventing yourself from snapping or jerking the leg upwards with lots of force also prevents a tear or strain. To do this, kicking, cycling, and other activities using the flexor muscles should be relaxed and should not feel like too much stress is being placed on the flexor muscles. Knowing the limits of your flexor muscles and not going too far beyond them is key to preventing a strain.
What Is It?
Shin splints can range from swelling of the muscle around the shin, to hairline fractures of the tibia, to tears and inflammation of the tendons connecting the muscles to the tibia.
Recovery from this condition varies based on what kind of shin splint it is. In most cases, plenty of rest from strenuous physical activity will help the condition, where in other, more severe cases, surgical decompression and repairs may become necessary.
How does one get Shin Splints?
How can we prevent Shin Splints?
Be sure to stretch and rest properly after a hard workout to allow your body time to heal, rather than jumping from one activity to the next. This reduces risk of inflammation and overuse of the muscles and tibia that lead to Shin Splints.
More information and Reference links
Hip Flexor Information:
Shin Splints Information: