As an athlete, you’re no stranger to injuries. Bumps and bruises are an unfortunate reality of actively participating in a sport. That’s why it’s so important to be aware of typical injuries you could be at risk of incurring. If you’re aware of injuries specific to your sport, you can prevent or treat them far more efficiently. 

A recent study by the CDC found that an average of 8.6 million sports and recreation-related injuries occurred annually from 2011 to 2014. Sprains and strains were found to be the most prevalent at 41.4% of all diagnosed injuries. 

As you can see, sports injuries are not uncommon. But they do vary from sport to sport. Let’s break some of the most popular sports in the United States and discuss what real injuries could occur within each. 

Common Sports Injuries in Baseball 

 

Repetitive stress and over-use related to catching and throwing balls is a major contributing factor in baseball-related injuries. Some of the most important muscle groups in baseball are the shoulders, forearms, core, and legs. The latissimus dorsi, abdominal muscles, deltoids, and triceps, in particular, are important in throwing a ball

Out of all the baseball positions, injuries crop up the most in pitchers. Batters are also subject to their fair share of injuries. This is a result of the frequent, repetitive nature of throwing and batting. As time goes on, arm, shoulder, and elbow injuries can occur. These sorts of injuries can be seen at all levels of the sport.

Here are some of the most common injuries in baseball players:

  • Sprains and strains
  • Rotator cuff tears
  • Labral tear (a tear in the shoulder socket)
  • Shoulder instability
  • Knee Injuries
  • Concussions
  • Thrower’s elbow (also known as epicondylitis)

How to Reduce Your Risk

Before hitting the field, be sure you’re doing everything possible to mitigate possible injuries. One important factor is never skipping a proper warm-up. Get your heart pumping and stretch before the game. Be sure to get your muscles moving before you stretch and then you can move on to static stretching and dynamic stretching in that order.

Cross-training is another great way to reduce your risk of injury. Be sure to incorporate physical activity other than baseball into your workout routine. Some suggested activities to include in your routine are yoga, swimming, TRX, and CrossFit.

 

Common Sports Injuries in Tennis

Although it’s not considered a high impact sport, it can still result in injury. Speed, flexibility, and a precise swing are paramount in tennis. When you hit the court, your body undergoes a lot of stress to turn on a dime and dart towards any incoming balls. If you’re a professional tennis player, you might see injuries as a result of overuse and repetitive motion. New or novice players often incur injury due to improper technique.

With such a dynamic sport, injuries aren’t isolated to one part of the body. The main muscle groups involved in tennis are the upper body, core, and lower body. So essentially, every part of the body is used. Tennis players can experience a wide array of injuries to a number of areas.

Here are some of the most common injuries in tennis players: 

  • Tennis elbow (or lateral epicondylitis)
  • Wrist strains
  • Ankle sprains
  • Rotator cuff tendinitis
  • Stress fractures
  • Tennis toe 

How to Reduce Your Risk

Get ahead of tennis injuries before they happen. One key aspect of prevention is proper gear. Be sure your racquet is the correct size and weight for you. Foot support is another vital tool in staying injury-free on the court. A good pair of shoes and tennis socks with extra cushion goes a long way.

Warming-up is another way to prevent injury. Be sure to get your body moving before a match by jogging, doing some light bodyweight exercises, and stretching. It is essential to warm your muscles up before playing.

Lastly, take breaks when necessary. If your body is telling you to give it a rest, listen. Overworking yourself can lead to poor technique and that might land you with an injury.

Common Sports Injuries in Football

 

Football is one of the most popular sports in the country. It’s also second in line for the most injuries incurred during a sport. This high-impact, close-contact sport is full of risk factors. Injuries can occur in players from youth leagues all the way up to the NFL.

The repetitive and high-impact nature of football is responsible for the high rate of injury. Muscles such as the biceps, triceps, core, deltoids, and hamstrings are all involved in this sport. But it also has an all-encompassing effect on nearly the entire body.

Here are some of the most common injuries in football players:  

  • Concussions
  • Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injuries
  • Posterior cruciate ligament (PCL) injuries
  • Ankle sprains
  • Wrist and hand injuries
  • Dislocations
  • Meniscus tears
  • General sprains and strains

How to Reduce Your Risk

Prevention is everything in a sport like football. Be aware of all the ways to mitigate injury and implement them religiously. One step starts before you even set foot on the field: your nutrition. Be sure to get in all your protein, vitamins, and minerals. Moreover, never skip out on hydration.

Another important way to reduce risk is proper equipment. Make sure your shoes fit properly and allow for optimal range of motion. Make sure your helmet and pads are high-quality and effective. Faulty equipment can lead to serious injury.

Conditioning and training is another huge part of injury prevention in football. This sport requires an abundance of stamina and skill. Stay on your game pre-season by working on flexibility, strength, endurance, and aerobics.

Common Sports Injuries in Soccer

Countries around the world site soccer as their most popular sport. It’s a rite of passage for many adolescents and a lifelong passion for countless adults. While it is a relatively safe sport, injuries can still occur.

Soccer involves its fair share of quick movement and physical contact. The quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes, and trunk (abdominals and lower back) are heavily used during soccer. However, the tendons also take on excessive stress due to the constant directional adaptation within the game. This is where the majority of injuries stem from.

  • ACL injuries
  • PCL injuries
  • Medial collateral ligament (MCL) injuries
  • Lateral collateral ligament (LCL) injuries
  • Cuts and bruises
  • Sprained ankles
  • Clavicle fractures
  •  Hamstring injuries
  • Shin splints

How to Reduce Your Risk

Overtraining and overuse are the enemies of a soccer player. The best way to combat injuries is to take an adequate amount of rest between games. Pay attention to any flare-ups or potential underlying injuries. When you do discover an injury, be sure to allow yourself the proper amount of time to heal.

Another huge risk factor for soccer players is the state of the field. Are there any holes, debris, or other foreign objects to address? Be sure the field is safe to play on. It’s also important to avoid playing on a slick, wet field.

Other preventatives include strength training of the most used muscles and joints, agility training, and mental exercises.

Common Sports Injuries in Volleyball

volleyball injuries

 

Volleyball may not involve direct contact but that doesn’t mean there’s no risk of sports-related injuries. Beach volleyball and indoor volleyball each carry their own risk factors for players. With repetitive motions such as jumping, spiking, and blocking, overuse is a major risk factor in volleyball.

Volleyball is a full-body sport that affects a range of areas. The posterior chain, hip, leg, and arm muscles all get a workout during an intense volleyball match. Foot and finger related injuries tend to be the most prevalent in this sport.

  • Ankle injuries
  • Finger sprains
  • ACL injuries
  • Rotator cuff tendinitis
  • Jumper’s knee (patellar tendonitis)
  • Shoulder injuries
  • Low back pain

How to Reduce Your Risk

Conditioning is an important factor in reducing volleyball injuries. This sport takes a lot of stamina and core strength. Focus on cardiovascular and strength training off the court. But, of course, be sure to give your body plenty of time to recover too.

Be sure to use support while playing volleyball as well. Since foot injuries are so prevalent, ankle brace or taping is extremely important in injury reduction.

Foster good habits during the game to prevent injury. Good form is everything in volleyball. Not only is improper form bad for your game, but it can also lead to unnecessary injuries. Be sure to train with form in mind and don’t lean on bad technique.

Common Sports Injuries in Basketball

 

Basketball actually holds the number one spot for injuries incurred due to sports. This might be surprising but when you look at the risk factors, it makes sense. With a wide range of participants from recreational athletes to pro players, basketball has a massive base of participants.

From turning on a dime to near gravity-defying jumps basketball players endure a lot of undue stress on the body. Leg muscles and tendons play a huge role in basketball. Other areas of concern include biceps, triceps, deltoids, and the rotator cuff.

  • Ankle sprains
  • Achilles tendonitis
  • ACL injuries
  • Finger injuries
  • Sever’s disease (or Calcaneal Apophysitis)
  • Sprains and strains
  • Hip and thigh injuries

How to Reduce Your Risk

Warm-ups and conditioning are great ways to reduce harm in basketball. Be sure to get your muscles moving and stretched out before you hit the court. You’ll also benefit from cross-training between games or in your off-season. Speed and agility training, as well as yoga and pilates, are great cross-training options.

When you suspect an injury, don’t put off getting it checked out. Landing on a sprained ankle or pushing through a fractured finger won’t do you any favors. The sooner you get in touch with your physician and start the healing process, the better.

Common Sports Injuries in Track and Field

 

Track and field are one of the oldest sports we still engage in today. In fact, historians agree that the sport found its roots all the way back in 776 BC. With such an exalted legacy, the sport is bound to draw in a wide pool of competitive athletes.

With an emphasis on running, jumping, and throwing, there’s a broad range of injuries that can occur during a track and field meet. Joints, in particular, bare the brunt of the damage. With some athletes taking on multiple track and field sports, they can face issues in multiple parts of the body.

  • Achilles tendon problems
  • Runner’s knee (patellar tendinitis)
  • Hamstring strains
  • ACL injuries
  • Tendonitis
  • Jumper’s knee (patellar tendinitis)
  • Rotator cuff injuries
  • Plantar fasciitis
  • Shin splints
  • SLAP (superior labrum anterior to posterior) tears

How to Reduce Your Risk

A proper warm-up is vital in track and field. Incorporate a consistent dynamic warm-up in your pre-meet routine. A little jog or dynamic stretch can go a long way in injury prevention.

High-quality shoes are especially important in this sport. If you’re experiencing chronic pain or injury it could be because you’re in need of new or better shoes. Once a pair reaches 500 miles of use it might be time to consider picking up a new pair.

Avoid overtraining. Track and field is an intense, high-impact sport. If you don’t give your body proper time to recuperate you’ll find old injuries flaring up and new ones start to emerge.

Common Sports Injuries in Hockey

Hockey is a fast-paced sport renowned for its intensity and non-stop action. Players put their all into the game and, as entertaining as that may be, it can be really rough on their bodies. There are a number of factors that contribute to the risk of injury in hockey.

A given player’s position and level of aggression will determine how likely they are to sustain injury. Hockey has a reputation for being violent and although the stereotype might be overplayed, it isn’t unheard of. So not only do hockey players have to worry about injury due to damage to muscles such as the adductors, quadriceps, glutes, and hamstrings, they also have to keep potential fights and crash landings in mind too.

  • Concussions
  • AC joint injuries
  • Medial Collateral Ligament (MCL) injuries
  • Elbow injuries
  • Back injuries
  • Broken collarbone
  • Muscle strains

How to Reduce Your Risk

One way to reduce your risk of injury in hockey is to monitor your risky behavior. Play by the rules and try not to get yourself in any avoidable situations that could put your body at risk.

Bringing your training off the ice can be a helpful way to prevent injury as well. Work on balance drills and strength training. Cardio is also a great piece of training to incorporate. Around 30 minutes of exercise outside of hockey, a few times a week is ideal.

Call on Parker Sports Medicine and Orthopedics

Sports injuries happen, and ignoring them can worsen your condition. Get back to your full potential with Parker Sports Medicine and Orthopedics. We’re at your service when acute and chronic orthopedic injuries leave you sidelined. From surgical care to regenerative medicine, you’ll be back in shape before you know it!

Are you ready to leave your sports injury in the past? Schedule your appointment today!