Set a goal to prevent the 5 most common football injuries

07 Sep 2022 08:00

Author:
University of Utah Health Communications

Attending a football game brings excitement and anticipation to fans who shout “Goal!” when a footballer scores. But when “Oh, no!” resounds in the crowd because an athlete on the field is injured by a fall, a blow or a collision with other players, the teams and the public are concerned about the seriousness of the injury and the football player’s recovery .

Football injuries are usually acute or cumulative. Acute injuries are traumatic while cumulative injuries result from repetitive stress on a muscle, joint or connective tissue trigger which can progressively worsen aches, pains and physical impairments.

Acute injuries

Christopher Gee, MD, MPH, specializes in primary care sports medicine and emergency medicine at the University of Utah Health. He often treats young athletes for football injuries and ranks the five most common acute football injuries he encounters.

  1. muscle strains
    • Quadruple
    • Calf
    • Tendon
    • Elder
  2. Ankle sprains
  3. Foot fractures
  4. Knee injuries
    • Knee sprain
    • Sprain or tear of the ACL (anterior cruciate ligament)
    • Meniscus tear or bruise
  5. Upper limb injuries
    • Wrist
    • Hand
    • Elbow
    • Head/Concussion
    • Clavicle fracture

Chronic injuries

In addition to acute football injuries, players can also suffer from chronic conditions such as Achilles tendonitis, iliotibial band syndrome, plantar fasciitis, runner’s knee, shin splints, stress fractures and tendinitis.

Prevent football injuries

Before joining a football team, an athlete should undergo a sports physical exam performed by a health care provider to assess their health, measure their body’s maturity and fitness, and record any current injuries or conditions. which could result in injury. Most states require an athletic physique before children and teens can play.

Since many injuries on the football field are the result of overuse, overtraining, poor conditioning or lack of proper warm-up, players who adhere to the following recommendations can reduce the risk soccer injury:

  • Warm up for at least 30 minutes before the game begins, starting with a few rounds and stretching your lower body and hips, groins, hamstrings, Achilles tendons, quadriceps, and neck.
  • Wear protective gear, including mouth guards and shin guards, and for goalkeepers, protective gloves. “Some players wear Q-Collars to reduce brain movement within the cranial space, which may help protect the brain from the effects of impacts to the head,” says Gee. Make sure all equipment is properly sized and maintained.
  • Check the playground for obstacles such as holes, puddles, broken glass, rocks or debris that could cause injury.
  • Avoid playing in bad weather or immediately after a thunderstorm when the ground can be slippery and muddy.
  • Give yourself time to heal after an injury, even relatively minor. Rushing backwards can increase the risk of re-injury.
  • Adopt healthy habits getting enough rest, staying hydrated and eating nutritious foods to prevent fatigue and injury proneness.

Recovering from football injuries

Football players can be injured when colliding with another player and during non-contact movements such as changing direction, tripping or running.

For athletes with a sports-related injury, orthopedists and physical therapists can help speed recovery and restore function. “Even though injured players cannot actively participate in subsequent matches, they should support their team by attending matches, cheering on their team and participating in practices and drills as much as possible,” says Gee, who is also the doctor. -chief. for Real Salt Lake Soccer Sports Medicine Services.

Athletes need to recognize and accept injuries as soon as possible to begin the healing process. Gee notes that many injuries can be successfully treated with NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) such as ibuprofen and the RICE protocol as follows:

  • Ris
  • Ithis
  • VScompression
  • Eelevation

Football players are happy to hear “Goal!” while actively playing a game, but are caught off guard if injured and are forced to put their playing time on hold while they recover. By paying close attention to their body through conditioning and training and recognizing any signs of injury, they can return to play faster when given the go-ahead by their healthcare provider and coach.

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