Injury prevention and rehabilitation

  • Created by: Tooth04
  • Created on: 15-10-21 13:32

Acute injuries

  • Acute injuries can display the following; 
  • sudden, severe pain
  • not being able to bear weight 
  • restricted movement 
  • -Fractures - a crack in a bone that can occur in different ways.                                                                                 
  • A simple/closed break doesnt penetrate through the skin or damage any surrounding tissues.                                 
  • A compound/open fracture does penetrate through the skin or damage any surrounding tissue.                           
  • A bone can break or crack in different positions. 

-Dislocations - when the end of a bone is forced out of position e.g. due to a fall or contact with another player.

-Strains - caused by muscle fibres stretching too far and tearing. Occur regularly in team games where the performer accelerates and decelerates quickly. 

-Sprains - occur to ligaments , a strong band of tissue around joints combining bone to bone, where too much twisting and turning stretches the ligamnet too far and causes it to tear. 

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Chronic injuries

  • Chronic injuries display;
  • pain when you excersise 
  • a dull ache when you rest 
  • swelling 

-Achilles tendonitis - Tendonitis is casued by over-use. The achilles tendon connects the gastrocnemius to the heel bone and is used regularly , making us prone to tendonitis.

-Stress fracture - stress fractures are caused by over-use , becoming tender and swollen. It is most common in weight-bearing bones where an increase in excersies voulme or intensity happens too quickly; so as muscles become fatigues they can no longer absorb the added shock, overloading the bone. 

-'Tennis elbow' - also caused by over-use of muscles attached to the elbow that straighten the wrist.The muscles and tendons become inflammed and tiny tears occur outside the elbow. 

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Screening (injury prevention method)

-Screening; can be used to identify those at risk of complications from excersise, prepare performers for sport, enhance performace and reduce injury. 

-many young performers have a CRY (cardiac risk in the young) scan using an ECG to assess and monitor thier hearts, being encourage by the sport governing bodies due to the demand of elite sport. 

-can identify past and pressnt injuries to enable the performer to select relevant conditioning training to prevent further injury. 

-in professional sport, it can be used to; assess muscle imbalances, core strength , ROM, posture alignment and mobility. Any detect problems can then be reduced and prevent injury through relevant training. 

-However, it can sometimes miss a problem (false negative) or create a problem that doesnt exist (false positive).It can also increase anxiety when an athlete finds out they have a health problem or are succeptible to injury. 

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Injury prevention methods

  • Protective equipment;
  • Football - shinpads
  • Rugby - scrumcap , gum shield, body armour'
  • Cricket - Batting pads, thigh pads , helmet

-Warm-up - warmups help prevent injury through increasing the elasticity of the muscle due to increased body temperature. Heart rate and respiratory rate also increase , increasing blood flow and supply of oxygen, nutrients, to the working muscle to prepare for strenuous activity. 

  • Three stages of a warm-up;
  • 1. cardiovascular excersise that gently increases heart rate --> increasing cardiac output and breathing rate--> increasing oxygen delivered to the working muscles. 
  • 2. stretching/flexibility excersises
  • 3. movements patterns that are to be carried out e.g. passing in football. 
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Injury prevention methods

-Active stretching - involves the perfomer pushing beyond the point of resistance , lengthening the muscles and connective tissue e.g. lifting your leg up and holding it into position.

-Static stretching - involves stretching while not moving to hold a muscle at the furtherest point you can for up to 30 seconds. E.g. trying to touch your toes. 

-Ballistic stretching - involves perfroming a stretch whilst swinging or bouncing to push a body part even further past its range of movement , yet it should only be done by athletes who are very flexible. 


-Taping and bracing;

-Taping provies extra support for a weak joints and muscles.

-Bracing involves hinged supports to give extra stability to joints and muscles that are weak or have been previously injured. 

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Proprioceptive training (Injury Rehabilitation met

-Proprioception is a sub-concious process using a system of recpetor nerves. For co-ordinated smooth movement , the brain needs accurate knowledge of movement; delivered by proprioceptors. 

-Proprioceptive training uses hopping, jumping and balance excerises to restore lost proprioception (due to injury) and teach the body to control the position of an injured joint sub-consciuosly. 

-For example, sprained ankles are rehabilitated using a balance board; wobbly movements are unpredictable , strenghtening the joint and re-educating the body to react quickly without thinking about it.  

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Strength training

-Free weights - such as dumbells , kettlebells have to be stabilise the weight as well as lift. 

-Machine weights - machine has a lot of control, so in the early stages of an injury the focus can be on improving strength. 

-Body weight - using the body as resistance , involving core body excersises e.g. the plank. Improving core strength helps balance and posture; reducing imbalances helps reduce chance of injury. 

-Therabands - latex bands of a variety of resistance. Light resistance can be used in the early stages , then using bands of greater resistance.  

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Hyperbaric chambers

-the aim of hyperbaric chambers is to reduce recovery time for an injury. 

-The chamber is pressurised like an aeroplane and there is 100% oxygen , meaning more oxygen can diffuse into the injured area. 

-The excess oxygen dissolves into blood plasma where it can reduce swelling , stimulate white blood cell activity and increase blood supply. 

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Cryotherapy and Hydrotherapy


-use of cold temperatures to treat an injury .

-RICE procedure - Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation - can limit pain and swelling by decreasing blood flow to the injured area. 

-WBC (whole body cryotherapy) uses cryogenic chambers to reduce pain and inflammation with below -100 degrees celcius temperatures , directing blood to core. Then when body warms up the oxygen and nutrient rich blood returns back around the body. 


-takes place in warm water and is used to improve blood circulation, relive pain and relax muscles. 

-the buyonacy of the water supports body weight to reduce the load on joints and allows for more excersises. Excersisng against the resistnace of the water helps strengthen the injured area. 

-Includes; squats, lunges, walking and running. 

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Compression garments and Foam rollers

Compression garments

-prevent DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis) , help blood lactate removal ,reduce inflammation and symptoms associated with DOMS. 

Foam rollers 

-a self-massage, they can release tension and tightness in a muscle , as well as between the muscles and the fascia (a layer of fibrous tissue that surrounds the muscle). 

-They can be usd to prevent injury and improve mobility.  

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-can prevent or relive soft tissue injuries .

  • Benefits;
  • increases blood flow so more nutrients and oxygen can pass through and help repair damage.
  • removes latic acid 
  • causes stretching of soft tissue to relive tension and pressure.
  • breaks can scar tissue, which if not removed can cause mobility problems. 
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Recovery methods from excersise

Cold therapy

-can target minor aches and pains. Cooling the surface of the skin using ice gives pain relief and causes vasoconstriction of the blood vessels;decreasing blood flow and reduce swelling and bleeding.

-A decrease in odema (a build-up of fluid which causes swelling) enables more movement. 

Ice baths 

-the cold water causes blood vessels to tighten and drains blood out of the legs. On leaving the bath, the legs fill up with new blood that invigorates the muscles with oxygen. 

-The blood that leaves takes away the built-up latic acid during that activity.

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Importance of sleep and nutrition for improved rec

-required sleep is often down the individual differences, yet heavy excersise programms require long and good quality sleep as some of the damage done to cells is repaired in sleep.

-non-REm sleep is where blood flow is directed towards the muscles to restore energy. Most elite athletes require 8-9 hours sleep.

-nutrition is crucial for restoring glycogen stores used up by excersise.

-There is a post-excersise window of 20 mins where glycogen replenishment is at its peak, so athletes often drink chocolate milk with a 1:3 carb to prtein ration helping the body to replenish glycogen more efficently. 

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