Foot And Ankle Injuries from Tennis
We all love playing tennis. Well, maybe not all, but if you are reading this post, you are probably a tennis player or a lover. As lovable as the sport is, a tennis player tends to experience some form of injury from the game at one point or another. The common injuries associated with the sport are foot and ankle injuries due to a great deal of quick running and stopping involved with the game.
Although foot and ankle injuries from Tennis might be anticipated when you engage in physical activities, this does not take the severity away. It can also prevent the full participation of the player in sports.
What factors are responsible for injuries from Tennis?
Different factors can make a tennis player prone to injuries from Tennis. These factors should be identified and, if possible, prevented or modified to reduce the chances of getting an injury in the game.
- Court surfaces
Tennis players play on court surfaces, and these surfaces are made of different materials posing physical challenges to the players, especially for the lower limbs. There are four common types of court surfaces; Hardcourt, Clay court, Grass court, Carpet court.
The surfaces have a different level of hardness and risk of injury they pose to a player. By identifying the surface and hardness level, you can minimize the risk of injuries from Tennis expected from the sport.
As important as the playing surface is, the footwear used in playing is equally important. The footwear should be made comfortable for the player and the type of surface the court has. The wrong footwear can cause severe damage to the feet and lead to more complicated injuries; this is why it is essential to get the right type before a game.
There is specialized footwear for each type of court. They are made to deal with the varying hardness level of the surfaces and prevent the players from avoidable injuries from Tennis.
- Weather condition
This factor also plays a huge role in affecting a player’s performance. Rain can sometimes affect the playing surface, reducing friction leading to an increased risk of slips and falls while playing a game. The grass court is most especially susceptible to this, as it is not advisable to continue playing tennis on a wet surface. The typical injury from this surface is usually the ankle sprain.
- Physical fitness
A player is expected to be physically fit before participating in any tournament. Most players already suffer from a subtle form of injuries during training, affecting their performance during the main game.
Also, a player that has suffered sports injury before needs to undergo proper physical rehabilitation before going on with a game or tournament. Poor therapy during rehabilitation will affect game performance.
What are the common forms of injuries from Tennis?
Different injuries from Tennis can be sustained from tennis; however, more of them come from the lower limbs, especially the foot and ankle. The damages to these parts are also different from one another. The common examples are:
- Ankle sprains: This form of sprain occurs in the ankle and involves the extreme stretching of the ankle ligament and a tear in severe cases. There are different reasons why a player can get an ankle sprain, for instance, playing on uneven ground or landing wrongly on the ankle. An ankle sprain can prevent or impact the performance of a player.
- Stress fractures: Fracture is a minor crack in a bone. In this case, it is caused by stress. The game of tennis involves exercising different body parts, including the muscles, tendons and bones. As a result of the continuous movement while playing tennis, there is a chance of experiencing stress fracture.
- Tendonitis: Tendonitis generally refers to the inflammation of the tendon. There are two main types of tendonitis: Achilles tendonitis and tibial tendonitis. The tendon is soft tissue, and due to the stress of repetitive movement placed on it while carrying out tennis exercises, it can get inflamed. If left untreated, tendonitis can become a severe condition.
- Plantar fasciitis: This form of injury, referred to as Heel Pain due to the location of the damage. It occurs as a result of long hours of playing or training, and the inflammation affects the plantar fascia around the heel region. Professional players are especially prone to this form of injury due to their duration on and off the court. The injury also gets worsens if the player does not take out time to get enough rest.
- Toenail Trauma: As the name implies, the area affected is the toenail. Players tend to make sudden stops while running and can get their toes bruised in the process. It is even worse if the player uses the wrong footwear.
How do you prevent injuries from Tennis?
There are different reasons why foot and ankle injuries from Tennis may occur among tennis players; some of the reasons have been mentioned above. Although for consistent players, it might be hard to stop this from happening altogether, some things can be put in play as prevention, such as:
- Choice of court: Any chosen court for practice or competition should be in good shape with an even surface. This will limit the chances of falling or breaking bones.
- Proper footwear: The right footwear is key to having fewer accidents. You should be conscious of selecting comfortable footwear for you while running or carrying out any other form of exercise. The shoe’s soles should also be able to withstand the court surface.
- Proper training: Training in the wrong form can affect performance while playing. Improper posture and regime can cause physical damage for an athlete. You should get good and helpful training when practising.
How do you treat an injuries from Tennis?
It is essential to get treated as soon as possible when you notice any form of discomfort or pain in your ankle or foot. Some treatments might require extreme measures, while some of them are mild. Some common treatment forms include:
- Rest: This is very important for every player, immediately after you notice any discomfort or any sign of pain. Rest plays a huge role in putting a player back to shape not only for tennis but also in other forms of sports.
- Icing: Using ice on injured parts can be very helpful in fast-tracking recovery, especially for inflammation and swelling. Care should be taken when using the ice
- Specialist intervention: Some cases of injury require the intervention of a medical expert, and you should see one as soon as possible if you have a severe case.
Foot and ankle injuries from Tennis can be a painful experience to a tennis player as it causes discomfort and poor performance during tournaments or sporting events. It is advisable to always take preventive measures like choosing the proper footwear and playing on a good tennis court.
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