Basketball Injuries are Foul! Common Injuries & What to Do About Them

With March Madness underway, it’s the perfect time to learn about the most common injuries sustained by basketball players – from your favorite college players, to the pros, to your very own superstar shooting in the driveway. We tell you what some of the most common injuries are and how to help prevent them, and what to do if you’re dealing with these common injuries that can really take the fun out of your game.

Basketball Players’ Most Common Injuries

As you might expect, with the often quick-turn movements, running, and jumping of the sport, many injuries are sustained by the lower extremities. Some of the more common injuries are:

Ankle: It’s easy for players to roll their ankles, especially if they land wrong (or on another player’s foot). They can end up with tendinitis, sprains, strains, etc.

Stress Fractures: A typical overuse injury, stress fractures in the feet can occur.

Knee: Injuries to the inner and outer knee such as MCL and ACL tears can occur, due to the twisting and pivoting that’s part of game play. Other knee issues like strains and tendinitis can also bother players.

Muscle Pulls: Straining or pulling muscles like the hamstring, quad, or groin can occur in basketball players, even at the pro level. Some of these can be more nagging than season-ending, but some can be serious.

Hand/Eye/Face Injury: Other common injuries tend to be the result of accidental contact with another player or the ball. Players end up with jammed fingers, an eye injured by a ball or player’s finger, or teeth struck by an opponent’s elbow. Protective gear like a mouth-guard can help.


Since some injuries like stress fractures and even pulled muscles can be the result of overuse or over-training, the key to prevention is proper conditioning and practice. As with all sports and athletic activities, gradually increase your intensity and duration; in other words, pace yourself. If you’re joining a new team or league, or starting out after a long break, your body needs time to adjust to a period of less activity. Some injuries can’t be avoided, like colliding with another player or rolling your ankle after landing badly. Another option to help address and/or prevent injury is having an injury screening or other specialized program with a physical therapist. Physical therapists are an excellent resource to evaluate your current movement patterns and assess any pain or symptoms you’re having.

If you’ve already suffered an injury, seeing a PT is also a great choice. S/he can examine you and develop a treatment plan to treat your injury. Treatment may involve both manual therapy and in-office as well as at-home exercises to strengthen and heal the injured area.

Body One Physical Therapy is here for all your basketball injuries, nagging pain, mobility problems, and whatever else is holding you back. Check out our Injury Screens and Sustained Optimal Performance program for injury screen/prevention. We’re locally-owned and operated, with four locations serving Central Indiana: North Indianapolis, South Indianapolis, Fishers, and Zionsville. Don’t wait to start living your life, call Body One today and let our team of talented physical therapists get you on the road to recovery!