by Team Snapbac
American football may be at the top of the list for aggressive team sports and most likely to cause injury, however anyone who works out is at risk for hurting their bodies. We are going to break down the top five most common sport’s injuries and show you how to help prevent them. One extra tip may keep your head on straight. There’s one injury that sits highest in the NFL but could happen in any active sport, and that is the concussion. Our best recommendation is to wear a good helmet, and if you don’t want to experience a head injury, you probably shouldn’t be a lineman. The other five are more common whether in the NFL or at your local gym.
Most athletic injuries occur from the waste down as you place a lot of strain and torque on your hips, knees, and ankles. This brings us to number one on our list.
1. Patellofemoral Syndrome
The knees are at an extremely high risk of injury, and patellofemoral syndrome can happen to a pro or an avid gym warrior. You knee cap is called the patella and it glides in notch on your femur, or thigh bone. If you injure this, it can cause joint swelling and an imbalance of the two major muscles that guide the patella in its movement. A high-grade compression tight can help secure the knee cap and surrounding muscles and bones during rapid movement, and it can also work to minimize swelling if a slip or fall occurs. If you do experience patellofemoral syndrome, apply ice and rest the knee immediately.
2. ACL Tear or Strain
The ACL is the primary ligament in charge of stabilizing the knee, so when you use your knees to brake, spin, and change direction, you put extra wear and tear on your ligaments. A complete tear requires surgery and months of recovery! If you wear compression gear simply to guard your knees, that would be a good enough reason.
3. The Groin Pull or Strain
Any football player will most likely be able to tell you about a groin injury at some point in their career. With high pressure agility moves, often at high speeds, it is common for a player to over-extend or wrench this muscle too fast. The groin muscle runs along the inside thigh from up in the groin down to the knee and is responsible for the opening and closing of the legs in lateral movements. Warming up, regular stretching, and full compression pants will help to protect this muscle by increasing flexibility and guarding the muscle during rapid lateral moves.
4. Hip Flexor Strain
The hips also take a lot of abuse when running, ducking, tackling, and pivoting. The hip flexor is the muscle on the front of your thigh connecting your hips to your leg and allowing you to raise your knee. Though sedentary people suffer the most from this muscle, if an athlete doesn’t keep it flexible and strong, they can easily pull or over-work it with sprints, stops and starts, inclines, and turns. Ice, heat, and rest will be required for nearly two weeks and then possible physical therapy depending on the severity. Be sure to stretch this muscle often and use compression tights to stabilize it and reduce unwanted movement.
5. Hamstring Strain
The worst pain we commonly see on athletes, whether NFL or any other sport that requires sprints and running, is the popped hamstring. The hamstring is the muscle along the back of the thigh, and it can be injured by pulling or tearing the muscle or tendons. A strain may only take a few days to heal, but a tear can take months. The primary cause of a hamstring injury is a lack of stretching. Compression clothing is a massive support specifically to the large muscle groups as it increases blood flow and oxygen, reduces swelling, helps eliminate metabolic waste, reduces side to side movement, and stabilizes desired muscle contractions.