Many people love playing sports. While some go on to play professionally, others enjoy it as a way to stay active be it with friends or in an adult league. The largest number of participants beyond professional athletes are children and teens.
There are many physical benefits to participating in sports, including helping control weight and reduce fat, preventing or delaying the development of high blood pressure, as well as emotional and social benefits. Unfortunately, as with most things, there are some risks in participating.
Most Common Sports Injuries
Each year, millions of adults and children suffer a sports-related injury that requires medical treatment. Some afflictions are caused by blows or falls, like a concussion or broken bone. However, some injuries are caused by overuse or overexertion.
Some of the most common sports injuries involve the neck and back. These might include:
- Herniated disc
- Muscle sprains and strains
- Juvenile kyphosis
- Dislocated vertebrae
- Cervicalgia (pain in the neck and shoulder)
Many of these injuries are caused by trauma, which often occurs in contact sports like football and rugby. Other athletic endeavors like cheerleading and gymnastics can also result in serious back and neck injuries.
You should always seek medical treatment after trauma to the neck or back. Imaging studies, like an MRI or CT scan, can help determine if the trauma led to an injury that requires treatment.
In some cases, physical therapy is the best option for treatment. However, a sports injury like Spondylolysis or a herniated disc can actually cause more problems. Both of these, along with other neck and back issues, can lead to the compression of spinal nerve roots.
It’s important to get a diagnosis and determine your treatment options.
Preventing Sporting Injuries
Beyond safety equipment, there are a few things you can do to prevent injuries while enjoying your favorite sport.
Start by warming up before you start playing. A warm-up might include walking or jogging for five minutes or calisthenics, like jumping jacks and bodyweight squats.
You might also want to incorporate weight training into your regiment to strengthen your muscles. Yoga can also help increase your flexibility.
One of the best ways to prevent the most common sports injuries is by using proper technique, which means lots of practice in order to get your form right.
No matter if you’re playing golf, soccer, football or cheering on the home team, injuries are a risk that must be taken seriously.
If you have been injured and tried conventional methods of treatment without successful results, it might be time to consider surgical options for your neck and/or back injuries. The professionals at The Bonati Spine Institute can review your MRI for free and determine what treatment option will work best in your specific case.