Sport Injuries occur in all types of sporting activities. They can occur at a match final, the last 10 meters of a race or at the beginning of a light training session. It’s important to know what to do once the sporting injury has occurred, as this will reduce your recovery time.
To begin with, Sport Injuries can be divided into Acute and Chronic Sport Injuries. With acute sport injuries, pain will develop suddenly during the physical activity. The cause of acute sport injuries can be due to collision with another player, trips or falls during activity or excessive load placed on a ligament or muscle resulting in sprains and strains. In contrast, chronic or overuse sporting injuries, the pain develops over a period of time.
Many sporting events often have a sport physiotherapist available to assess the injury and advice on appropriate management. In an event when first aid or a sport physiotherapist is not available, the PRICE principle should be followed to prevent further injury and also aid in a quicker recovery for the athlete.
PRICE is an acronym for:
Protect: Protect the injured person and the injured limb. This might involve using a splint or sling to support the injured limb. If the injury occurred in a field event, a game may need to be stopped to prevent any further collisions. If the patient can walk, carefully move them to a safe place. However, if in any doubt, don’t move the patient and call for assistance.
Rest: Resting an injury is very important particularly at the early stages. Continuing to ‘run it off’ or returning too soon can result in further tissue damage and a prolonged injury period. Different injuries require different amount of rest. A visit to your sport physiotherapist at your sport injury clinic will reassure you when and how to start back training.
Ice: Applying ice to the injury site will reduce further injury by decreasing the inflammation at the injury site and also reduce pain for the patient. Ice can be applied by putting crushed ice in a freezer bag and put it onto the injury site. A damp towel should always be used between the ice and your skin to prevent an ice burn to the skin. Ice packs should NOT be left on any longer than 15 minutes.
Compress: While inflammation carries chemicals necessary for healing the damaged tissue, excessive amounts can delay the healing time of the injury. Applying a compression bandage is another method to reduce the amount of swelling at the injured site. Care should be taken when applying the compression bandage, as it should not be too tight.
Elevation: Elevating the injured limb also helps to reduce swelling. Blood flow and inflammation will return towards the heart assisted by gravity if the limb is elevated. This will reduce the swelling at the injury site and in turn reduce pain. Ensure it is safe to elevate the limb and that the patient is comfortable.
This is a basic outline of the PRICE principles, however if you are ever in doubt as to the extent of care a patient needs after an injury, be safe and call for appropriate care.
The PRICE principle when applied correctly will reduce the athlete’s period of time to recover. If your aim is to get back to your sporting activity as soon as possible, visit your local sport clinic, where you will have sport injury therapy specific to your injury and your goals.
Low Back Pain is extremely common and 85% of the population will suffer with it at some stage in their lives. A short period of Low Back Pain is normal and can often ease without treatment from your physiotherapist or physical therapist.
However if your Low Back Pain is persistent or chronic, having a plan to manage your pain is essential. A visit to your local physiotherapist to diagnose what’s causing your low back pain is crucial. Your physiotherapist will complete an assessment which will identify the source of your pain. Then carry out a personalised treatment to help ease your pain and finally develop a stretching or exercise plan to support your recovery at home.
Below are 4 common factors which can contribute to low back pain:
1. Long hours in front of the computer.
Those who have sedentary occupations, sitting at a desk or in the car for long periods are at increased risk of developing low back pain. It is important to take brakes when possible and incorporate exercises into you daily routine.
Supportive footwear is essential not only for your feet but also for your back. This is particularly important for those who walk or stand all day in work. Proper footwear will support the arch of your foot and will also act as a shock absorber, protecting your back. Your physiotherapist can assess the posture of your foot and advise if orthodontics or strengthening exercises are require to support both your feet and low back.
If you suffer with chronic low back pain and you are a smoker, consider quitting today. Nicotine restricts blood flow to your disks and vertebrae and you have increased risk of them breaking down early. This also makes it difficult for your body to absorb calcium, making way for more bone and back related problems. Contact your local rehabilitation center to quit today.
4. Lack of regular exercise
Regular exercise is essential for a healthy lifestyle and also aids in the prevention of low back pain. Without regular exercise our muscles can become tight and sore. They compress our joints and we feel stiff and achy. Once this pain is experienced, many people try to protect their back by not ‘overdoing it’ or exercising. However regular exercising and stretching is exactly what is needed in this case. Check with your physiotherapist or physical therapist first for an appropriate strength and exercise plan.
Niamh treats a wide range of clients from the sedentary to elite athletes. She focuses on postural and biomechanical assessment which addresses the alignment of the joints, occupational and sport injuries, exercise based rehabilitation and re-injury prevention.
Tel: 059 9131667
Body Kinetic - Physical Theraphy & Sports Injury Clinic
Granby Clinic, Granby Row, Carlow