Athletes face different types of injuries throughout their entire course of their professional career. Some injuries are pretty minor while other injuries can ruin one’s career. Women in general are known to be in experiencing injuries which make it more important for them to practice caution. Let us look at the most common injuries & treatments female athletes face in training & competition.
One of the most common injury professional athletes experience are the stress fractures. Stress fractures are known as a fracture of a bone caused by repeated mechanical stress. Stress fractures oftentimes develop from cumulative repetitive forces insufficient to cause an acute fracture which is pretty common for athletes. The fatigued muscle transfers the overload of stress to the bone which causes a tiny crack known as a stress fracture. It has also been shown through various studies that women have a higher incidence of stress fractures than men.
Fortunately, treating stress fractures is relatively simple as athletes need only to rest from the activity that caused the stress fracture, and engage in a pain-free activity during the six to eight weeks for it to heal. Aside from rests, athletes can also consider using shoe inserts or braces to help these injuries heal in a timely manner.
Patellofemoral pain syndrome (PFPS) is also known to be a very common problem among female athletes. It is characterized by knee pain ranging from severe to mild discomfort seemingly originating from the contact of the back of the kneecap with the thigh bone. Runners, cyclists, basketball players and other sports participants are at risk in developing PFPS. A number of athletes who experience such issues engage themselves in conservative treatment which is considered to be quite effective. Most of the patients were able to relieve the pain through a variety of activities which include quadriceps muscle stretches, balanced strengthening, proprioceptive training, hip external rotator strengthening, orthotic devices, as well as effective bracing.
At least 6-month is required to see the results of a comprehensive rehabilitation program. However, if this program fails patients are suggested to pursue surgical treatment. Lateral release, proximal patellar realignment, or medial/anteromedial tibial tubercle transposition, that can be used for realignment of the patella in the trochlear groove and reduction of the patellofemoral pressure are one of the several surgical procedures found today.
Another common injury is with the Anterior Cruciate Ligament or is mostly known as ACL. ACL injury can be torn or sprained which often occurs with a sudden change in direction or pivot against a locked knee. Women are prone to non-contact ACL injuries due to the fact that they run and cut sharply in a more erect posture compared to men, while at the same time bend their knees less when landing from a jump.
Prevention is always better than cure and the same can also be said with regards to these types of injuries. Female athletes will be able to reduce the likelihood of them getting injured with proper strength training and conditioning. There is also leg muscle strength training and core training that can be done with a professional instructor. Coaches do help a lot especially since they are able to supervise and mentor their athletes on how to jump and land properly and avoiding any straight knee landing. Click here to learn more about treatment for such injuries.