How to Help Prevent and Treat Swimming Injuries

Swimming is a great relaxation activity, as well as a sport that can help keep you fit and provide plenty of benefits for people who usually do all their training on dry land. With pools open for the summer season, plenty of people may add in a couple of days at the pool to their weekly routine. Yet just like every workout, swimming has its own risks for injury: we share some tips to make sure the pool doesn’t lead to time off from your favorite activities.

Common Swimming Injuries

Shoulder: This is probably the most common injury for frequent, and especially competitive, swimmers. With the overhead movement required in certain strokes, as well as the water’s resistance, this puts stress on the shoulder.

Hip: For some swimmers, like those using the breaststroke, hips can also be a more common injury.

Knee: Although the pool is often good for rehabbing knees injured in other sports, sometimes swimming can negatively affect the knee, depending on the type of swimming.

Cause of Swimming Injuries

As with so many sports injuries, one of the biggest risk factors is overuse/overtraining. That’s basically doing too much, too soon, and/or too often. Competitive swimmers who make the same repetitive motion in the water may be at a higher risk for some injuries; however, recreational swimmers who don’t have proper form, and who overdo it may also risk injury.

Preventing Injury at the Pool

When working out or training, moderation is key to helping prevent injury. Allow rest days in your routine to give your body time to rebound from a tough workout. Also, just like bikers/runners/etc should use the pool to cross train, try adding in non-pool activities to help reduce injury risk. Learning the proper form in your swim stroke or water aerobics is also equally important to helping stay healthy.

What to Do If Injured

If you’re already struggling with a swimming-related injury, or you’d like to hit the pool but have other pain/problems, it might be time to see a physical therapist. A physical therapist will examine and assess your condition, and recommend a custom-treatment plan designed with your unique situation in mind. The PT will work with you, most often with manual therapy and at-home exercises, to improve your strength, mobility, movement, discomfort, and more.

If you’re ready to dive in, Body One Physical Therapy is ready to help! We’re locally owned and operated with three locations serving Central Indiana: North Indianapolis,  Fishers, and Zionsville. Don’t let pain and movement problems set limits on your life, call Body One today!

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