With the warm summer weather fast approaching, activity and motivation levels peak as everyone gets outside to enjoy the sunshine! However, with an increase in activities and relaxation mode activated, a trend in the type of injuries that occur in summer develops. The 3 most common summer injuries include:
Shoulder Overuse Injuries
Whether it’s backyard cricket or swimming laps in the pool, the summer holidays are a great time for water and racquet-based sports. However, these sports rely on shoulder strength and repetitive overhead shoulder movements. Overtime this can lead to an overuse injury if the shoulder is not used to these repetitive movements.
An overuse injury refers to any type of muscle or joint injury, such as tendonitis or a stress fracture, that is caused by repetitive stress. Exercise applies stress to the body, which the body naturally responds to by thickening and strengthening the various tissues involved. However, if those tissues are exposed to an unaccustomed excessive overload within a short period of time, overuse injuries can develop.
As the warm weather hits, many people use running, cycling and F45 to get in shape. Although these are all excellent ways to get fit, a sudden increase in this high impact activity can result in pain if the body isn’t adequately conditioned. The most common pain caused by this increase in activity is Patella-Femoral Pain. It accounts for up to 25 – 40% of knee pain presentation amongst the young, active, and elderly. It refers to pain felt around and/or behind your patella (kneecap), where your patella articulates with your upper thigh bone (femur) to form your patellofemoral joint.
One of the main causes of Patellofemoral Pain is poor biomechanics around your knee which results in altered forces acting through the patella in the patellofemoral joint. As a result, the patella can overload on areas of the femur or tibia which overtime can result in pain, discomfort or irritation.
With an increase in summer sports involving high amounts of agility, uneven grounds, and improper footwear, ankle sprains are one of the most prevalent injuries seen during summer. Most commonly, the ligaments on the outside of the ankle are injured. These injuries generally occur as a result of a rapid change in direction or an awkward landing position which causes the ankle to roll inwards and overstretch the ligaments. Depending on the severity of your ankle sprain, a rapid onset of swelling, bruising and pain develops which can result in a general decrease of weight bearing on the affected ankle.
How to Reduce Your Risk of Injury This Summer
- Avoid doing “too much, too soon” instead, increase your exercise at a rate of 10% per week this includes distance, speed and weight.
- Limit long sessions in the surf or the pool, especially if you’re not a regular swimmer or surfer.
- Always do a proper warm-up and cool-down.
- Ensure to identify and correct any pain or discomforts you’re experiencing – do not try to push through as this can be an indication of your body not responding well to the load.
- Use proper equipment – wear supportive shoes, use the correct size racquet.
If any of these symptoms sound familiar to you, come and see one of our friendly physiotherapists to get you back to the summer fun! See our availabilities here