When you’re not watching your favorite college teams duke it out in this year’s NCAA Tournament, are you hitting the court yourself to get some exercise and enjoy a favorite pastime of many Americans? If so, injury prevention needs to play a role in preparation and gameplay. Here are a few ways to avoid injury and what to do if one occurs.
Preventing Basketball Injuries
The best way to spend more time in the game and less on the bench is not to get hurt in the first place. Here are a few recommendations to keep you on the court:
- Before playing after a long break (during the offseason, etc.), have a physical to ensure you are healthy enough to play.
- Drink plenty of water. Injuries are more common when a person is not hydrated properly.
- Proper conditioning such as cardio and strength training can help to curb injuries.
- Rest when you need to. Repetitive motion injuries can occur if a person continues to play through pain.
- If you do get hurt, stay on the bench until a medical professional clears you. This will lessen the risks of reinjuring yourself.
Recovering from Basketball Injuries
Recovering from basketball injuries is all about knowing how to care for the most common injuries associated with the sport.
- Sprained Ligaments – The most common sprains are to the wrist, finger, knee, ankle, and toe. An ankle or knee can easily be twisted by stepping down wrong. Jammed fingers often occur when the tip of a fully extended finger strikes the ball. Keep sprains elevated and use plenty of ice to keep inflammation down.
- Muscle Strains – Muscle strains are common when a player doesn’t warm up properly or fails to stretch following a game. Ice is recommended to reduce swelling. For more serious strains, be sure to get plenty of rest.
- Knee Injuries – When a knee gets twisted around, more serious injuries may occur such as a torn meniscus or ACL, both of which require corrective surgery.
- General Soreness – This is especially common when a person plays too hard after time off, doesn’t stretch properly, or plays while not properly hydrated. After proper rest, a person should be able to return to the game with a heightened understanding of the importance of warming up and not overdoing it.
If You’ve Overdone It Playing Basketball
Whether you’ve suffered a repetitive motion injury or just played as though you hadn’t aged a few years since your last game, Ward Chiropractic and Rehab can help you to recover faster by offering the correct adjustments, exercises, and sports rehabilitation to get you back on the court. Call (703)672-1661 to schedule an appointment.