Overuse injuries account for nearly 50% of all muscle and bone injuries seen by healthcare providers. With increased competition in sports, especially youth sports, it is important to know the signs and treatments related to overuse injuries.
What causes overuse injury?
Overuse injuries occur from stress on the bone, muscle, tendon, or ligament. Over time these stresses cause the tissue to become inflamed and weakened. Usually it is repetitive activity, lack of sleep, or improper technique that causes the injury.
According to experts at stopsportsinjuries.com, “Training errors are the most common cause of overuse injuries. These errors involve rapid acceleration of the intensity, duration, or frequency of activity. Overuse injuries also happen in people who are returning to a sport or activity after injury and try to make up for lost time by pushing themselves to achieve the level of participation they were at before injury”.
How can they be prevented?
Jake Duhon, Director of Sports Medicine for Therapy Center and Certified Athletic Trainer suggests the following when preventing overuse injuries:
- Do not over-train or exercise too much in one day.
- Make sure to allow proper recovery time and use recovery techniques for healing purposes
- Most importantly, perform proper warm up and cool down routines to maintain a functional range of motion.
It is recommended that you seek the advice of a sports medicine specialist or certified athletic trainer when beginning an exercise program or sport to prevent chronic or recurrent problems. In addition, an exercise program can be modified to safely maintain overall fitness levels while you recover from an injury. Individuals should return to play only when clearance is granted by a health care professional.
View our resource page for tips on overuse injuries or contact our Sports Medicine program today to learn more about overuse injuries and the programs we offer.