‘Tis the Season for Summer Ball…and Summer Ball Injuries! We Tell You How to Help Prevent Them!
Do you play on a work softball team? How about sit in the stands for your kids’ baseball games? Summer is a season that sees ball parks filled on the weekends and whether you’re playing yourself or watching, it’s important to know some common ball-player injuries (if you don’t already) – as well as ways to help prevent them. We came up with a list of common player woes and some tips to head them off this summer season.
It should come as no surprise that pitchers tend to see more shoulder-related injuries due to the rotation of this particular joint. Shoulder injuries can come on as a nagging, overuse injury, or they can also come as an acute injury due to a sudden force or impact. Young players aren’t immune from overuse injuries, and physical therapists are seeing more youthful athletes in treatment than in years past. Of course, with age comes joint stiffness, loss of flexibility, even possible arthritis – so firing up your old fast-pitch might be risky!
With the sudden turning and running involved in softball and baseball, knee injuries can be prevalent. Both the ACL (outer) and MCL (inner) ligaments of the knee can be affected, as well as the meniscus in the knee joint. These injuries typically require a planted foot, with a twisted knee-type motion. Less serious, but also annoying is knee pain that can come with the running and activity if you’re out of shape and not used to the physical motion, if you’re overweight, or have underlying arthritis.
Back Pain & Injuries
Pitchers and catchers can both suffer back pain and issues due to the repetitive motions of throwing and crouching. Older players may be at a higher risk of back injury than younger players, because older players may carry extra weight, be less flexible, or have existing or previous back injuries or problems.
Wrist, Hand, & Elbow Injuries
Ball players of any age can suffer from wrist, hand, finger, and elbow injuries – due to the nature of the game. The impact of a ball or a fall could fracture a finger, just as the ball could impact your hand or wrist. You can also injure your wrist through the repetitive motion of throwing. Throwing the ball is another common motion that may cause damage to your elbow over time.
While you can’t prevent every injury (like falling or catching a ball wrong), you can hopefully reduce your risk of injury by trying to be in the best shape possible. Working on your core strength and flexibility, and keeping your weight at an appropriate level are all helpful for these sports and injury risk reduction. Warming up properly, and ensuring proper technique when pitching, catching, hitting, and running can also help reduce the chances you or your child will end up on the IR list this summer. Also be sure to give your body adequate rest, fuel, and hydration so you’ll be at your best!
Are you hoping to play this summer but have some nagging pain? Did your young star pitcher get hurt this summer season? Let a Body One Physical Therapist get you or your young player back in the game! Body One Physical Therapy is locally-owned with four area locations serving Central Indiana: North Indianapolis, South Indianapolis, Fishers, and Zionsville. Our team of highly-trained professionals are compassionate and caring and treat clients of all ages, activity levels, and sports/hobbies. Call us today and let us help you make this your best summer season yet!