As our national sport from the Premiership to Sunday football league this is our most participated in sport. Football is a highly aerobic sport, enduring for 90mins, including bursts of anaerobic exercise in the form of sprinting.
It comes as no surprise we see a number of injuries originating from football and requiring some level of football physiotherapy.
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Common football injuries
Often Explosive and with multi-directional movement patterns. It uses mainly lower limbs and consequently we see a large number of injuries to the legs.
Hamstring Strains and/or tendonopathries may arise through poor techniques including follow through from kicking. This causes strain on an already extend muscle (Eccentrc force) which can cause issues to arise. These issues can effect muscles as well as tendons such as a calf tear.
Low sensitivity (low proprioception) levels during the rapid activity can also increase the risk of injury. This occurs especially with glute weakness or quad difficiency. These injuries can include twisting to the knees (knee valgus) and subsequent knee ligament damage. We also see a lot of injury due to trauma through collision such is the nature of the game.
- Hamstring strain
- Lateral ankle sprain
- ACL sprain
- PFPS (runner’s knee)
- Shin splints
- Achiles tendonitis
- Calf tear
- PFPS (runners knee)
Prevention of football injuries
We always recommend warming up thoroughly before all sporting activity. As is often the case with highly energetic and explosive sports then focusing on the correct techniques helps to minimise risk. This can also inlcude a sports massage before hand to help release tightness levels within the muscles.
Football can benefit a great deal with ongoing strength and conditioning. This should also include screenings for weaknesses. A training program focused in relevant areas such as the hamstrings can help improve strength in the weak and problem areas.
Treatment of football injuries
Inevitably injuries will occur either through inadequate preparation or trauma through accidental collision. Physiotherapy and sports massage help manage the soreness of lower limb overuse. Personal training and strength and conditioning aids in the prevention of injury. It minimises weaknesses found in the Musculoskeletal (MSK) system. Sports injury management is recommended for those who do suffer more serious injuries. This is the safest route back to full fitness and return to competition.