There are many things players can do to help prevent things like overuse injuries from happening and to help reduce risk of injuries in general. Below are 4 tips to help you or your athlete.
1. Proper Assessment
Screening and assessment is key! Whether you are or are not currently experiencing pain or an injury.
If you aren’t currently experiencing pain…
Don’t wait until there is an issue and problem to get assessed or looked at. There are many different screening and assessment tools out there to help find any asymmetries, dysfunctions, or potential issues. Find them and address them before they turn into a real problem.
Don’t wait until there’s the straw that breaks the camel’s back.
If you are experiencing pain or an injury...
I’m sure you are or will seek out the appropriate help to rehab and improve your pain. While getting rid of pain and addressing the area that hurts or has issues is important, but your rehabilitation process should not stop there. There’s more!
From my experience with volleyball players, other athletes, and treating people in general, the site of the issue is usually not the true culprit or what’s causing the issue.
What do I mean by this?
Watch this video to learn more: Where You Hurt Is Not Why You hurt
Find a practitioner that is thorough, sees the whole picture, and can get to the root of what’s driving the issue.
Go to www.mynextlvl.com/discovery for our Free Discovery Session
2. Avoid Early Specialization and Cross Train
While there are traumatic injuries, many times injuries we see are due to overuse and repetitiveness. Allowing children to play different sports and cross train, especially at a young age, can minimize this. Playing different sports and doing different activities is also important and necessary to help children develop their coordination and movement. As children grow and develop physically, they need varying degrees and types of stimulus.
3. Strength and Conditioning Programs
Get on a proper strength and conditioning program that will help address the imbalances from the sport. There’s a lot of science and research behind this and supporting this. Being on a methodically thought out and planned out program will help players improve their imbalances and technique, resulting in reduced risk of injury and improved performance.
4. Rest/ Take Time Off
This you think would be the easiest, and on paper I guess it is, but when it comes time to doing it it’s really tough. As an athlete you’re probably not good at “resting” and “sitting still”. Having an “off season” and taking time off is very important though, physically and mentally. You need to give the body time to rest, recover, and recharge from your primary sport.
Do keep in mind resting doesn’t mean sitting on the couch binge watching seasons upon seasons of Netflix or playing video games till 3 AM every night . Use the time to rest a little, and then when you’re ready cross train, explore different activities, or work on some of your deficits, like mobility for example.
There you have it. My four tips to help prevent overuse injuries. If you have any questions or to learn more please feel free to contact us. Be sure to check out our other past and future posts.