Whether you’ve played football yourself or you’ve only been a spectator, you’re aware that it’s a rough sport that can inflict a number of different injuries on its players. Even with all the protective equipment and training received, athletes still run the risk of getting injured — and ultimately, benched.
Below are some of the most common football injuries, how you can prevent them, and how you can repair the damage if you get injured.
There’s a lot of running involved in football, especially for certain positions like wide receivers and offensive backs. All that running can cause your Achilles tendon to become tight, swollen, and irritated, which can prevent you from playing.
Regular physical therapy and a good stretching regimen can prevent the tendon from rupturing entirely.
We’ve all likely seen the heartbreaking moment when our favorite player limps off the field holding the back of their thigh. In fact, a study done by the U.S. National Library of Medicine showed that there have been 176 hamstring injuries in the past decade. (ESPN, 2018)
Thankfully, although common, hamstring strains are typically not dangerous and can be improved with the help of physical therapy to restore a player’s regular mobility.
Knee Ligament Injuries
Although ACL injuries are more common, football players can also injure their PCL, MCL, and LCL. Contrary to popular belief, not all ligament injuries require surgery — some can be healed through a good physical therapy regimen.
Back when Philadelphia Eagle’s player, Carson Wentz, tore his ACL and LCL in December of 2017, he received some wise words from former Arizona Cardinal’s player, Carson Wentz, who also suffered a torn ACL, MCL, and dislocated patella years earlier.
“It’s incredibly important to have a [physical therapist] that knows when to push the player and when to back off. And that player has to trust them.” (NBC Sports, 2018)
Since it’s such a high-contact sport, football presents the risk of concussion more than most other scholastic or elite-level sports. Typical concussion recovery involves a lot of rest to give your brain the chance to heal itself after a blow.
However, if you suffer a severe concussion, vestibular rehabilitation and concussion therapy can help restore your balance, strength, and nervous function so you don’t interfere with your brain’s recovery as you return to your sport.
Preventing Football Injuries
The best way to prevent these common football injuries is to:
Stay in Good Physical Shape: Proper strength and conditioning are essential for any football player — from varsity to college to elite levels. The stronger your muscles and ligaments are, the better chance they have of avoiding damage during a game.
Wear the Right Equipment: If your protective gear isn’t fitting properly or gets damaged during a game, don’t wear it. Only wear well-fitting equipment that can handle tackles and other contact.
If you or a loved one has suffered an injury on the gridiron, give Profysio Physical Therapy a call today. We are dedicated to providing each of our patients with compassionate, insightful, and individualized clinical care to improve and enhance the quality of their lives and get them back on track. To schedule an appointment, call us today!