2 Drills to Injury Proof Your Ankles

2 Drills to Injury Proof Your Ankles: A Beginner’s Guide

Injuries are inevitable in any sport or activity. They occur when one suffers from overuse, improper technique, poor training, lack of proper equipment or other factors. There is no way around them; they cannot be prevented nor can they be cured. However there are ways to prevent injuries and to make sure that you do not suffer an injury which will limit your performance during competition.

The first thing to remember is that if you have been injured before, then it is very likely that you will get another injury. If you think that you might have already sustained an injury, then seek medical attention immediately. You may need surgery to correct the problem. Remember that there are two types of injuries:

A) Non-contact injuries such as sprains, strains and bruises caused by contact sports such as football, hockey or soccer.

B) Contact injuries such as broken bones, torn ligaments and concussions caused by falls or collisions with hard objects.

Non-Contact Injuries: Sprains, Stretches & Bruises

Sprain : A sprain is a type of soft tissue injury. It occurs when the muscle fibers become stretched beyond their normal range of motion due to excessive force applied to the joint. This causes pain and swelling at the affected area. The most common types of sprains are:

1) Ankle sprain: It is the stretching or tearing of the ligaments surrounding the joints of one’s ankle.

2) Wrist sprain: It is the stretching or tearing of the ligaments surrounding the small bones of one’s wrist.

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Strain : A strain are caused by muscles becoming stretched or torn due to excessive and sudden force applied to them. They can either be a partial or a complete tear.

1) Strained muscles: These are the result of a partial tear in the muscle and are very common among athletes who over-exert themselves.

If not treated immediately, the strain can lead to a complete tear of the muscle after a day or two.

2) Complete muscle tear: This is a result of a complete tear in one of the muscles.

It requires immediate first aid treatment before seeking medical attention.

Bruise : This is the result of a trauma to soft tissues such as the skin, muscles and blood vessels. It is marked by the affected area becoming black and blue. A bruise causes extreme pain and discomfort and one should seek immediate first aid treatment if suffering from one.

Contact Injuries: Bone Fractures, Ligament Tears & Dislocations

Bone Fracture : This occurs when the hard bone is broken into two or more pieces. A bone fracture can either be a complete break or a partial break.

1) Complete break: This occurs when the bone breaks into two separate pieces.

2)Partial break: This occurs when the bone is broken into more than two pieces, but less than three.

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3) Compound fracture: This occurs when the broken bone pierces the skin causing an open wound. It is very likely that dirt and other particles will get inside the wound which will cause an infection. It is thus recommended to seek immediate medical attention if you experience a compound fracture.

Ligament Tear :This occurs when the ligament, a band of tissue that connects two bones together, is torn. They can either be a complete tear or a partial tear:

1) Complete tear: This occurs when the entire ligament is torn.

2)Partial tear: This occurs when only a part of the ligament is torn.

Dislocation :This occurs when a bone slips out of the joint. It is a very common injury among athletes and those who engage in rough contact sports. A dislocated joint causes extreme pain which limits mobility of the affected body part. It should be immediately put back in place by another person if possible, or by yourself if nobody is available to help you. One should never attempt to push the bone back into place themselves as this could cause further damage.

Sources & references used in this article:

Efficacy of a sports specific balance training programme on the incidence of ankle sprains in basketball by E Cumps, E Verhagen, R Meeusen – Journal of sports science & …, 2007 – ncbi.nlm.nih.gov

Nonoperative treatment of double lateral ligament tears of the ankle by D Drez JR, JC Young, D Waldman… – … American journal of …, 1982 – journals.sagepub.com

Your Cart by B Russell, D Russell, PJ Russell, J Burnell, G Hiscock… – russellhoops.com

Long-term follow-up of lateral reconstruction with extensor retinaculum flap for chronic ankle instability by Y Tourné, C Mabit, PJ Moroney… – Foot & Ankle …, 2012 – journals.sagepub.com