About Sports Injuries
About Sports Injuries
This post is to share some information on sports/workout related injuries. Injuries occur mainly because of these reasons a) exercise form is incorrect b) the muscles are weak c) Over training. Injuries can be largely avoided by exercising with a correct form, by strengthening all the muscles equally and by taking rest.
Doing crores of crunches one day and crores of bicep curls the other day will definitely give muscle pain and can turn into strains. Okay I am not against crunches and bicep curls. But if you chose to do these isolated exercises then please don’t play favourites to just one exercise Why? .Let us find out in details
Let us find out what is the difference between ligaments and muscles
Ligaments join the muscles to the joints. Basically it is the ligaments that hold the joints in place, properly connected to the muscles. So it is the muscles that bear our weight not the ligaments. Ligaments just hold the joints. So if the muscles are weak then the weight is transferred to the ligaments and this cause ligament ruptures and tears.
Core of a joint
Core does not only mean abs. Even joints have a core. Think of your knee. It is held by 3 main muscles.
The lower end of the hamstrings and quadriceps muscles and the upper end of the calf muscles. And then there are 4 ligaments which attach these muscles to the joint. Ligaments never take the weight, they are delicate and they cannot be strengthened. It is the muscles, to which the ligaments are attached. that can be strengthened. So strengthen your muscles and save your ligaments and hence your joints. This was point one.
Now as we saw that there are 3 muscles that are the core of the knee joint. Of these 3 muscles, quads and hams are attached to the gluteus muscles (bums). So if in the bid to lose thigh fat we keep doing running on the treadmill or cross trainer exercises then we will work mostly our quads and glutes muscles. We will be working other muscles also but other muscles are not impacted to that extent. Hence the other muscles will be deprived of any training. They will become weak and so the chances of ligament tear or knee pain will occur. The chances of wearing out the knee joint will also increase.
Point 2 is that you will have to take care of all muscles around the knee joint to keep it away from injury. Keep this in mind esp when you do cardio exercises which does not work all knee core muscles. This is the reason athletes/ sportsman/ runners do a lot of strength training instead of just doing cardio.
This is also the reason you are asked to do squats and lunges for legs as they work the gluteus, hams as well as the quads. But remember to do calf raises also along with squats and lunges so as to balance all the 3-4 core knee muscles.
Similarly, when you do a bicep curl then remember that since this muscle is attached to the shoulder joint so you need to workout all other muscles which hold the shoulder joint otherwise, doing only bicep curls for long, will develop and strengthen only the bicep muscle and can move your shoulder joint towards the stronger muscle(bicep muscles) attached to the joint. And hence your entire biomechanics will go for a toss. You must have seen body builders with bulky biceps having shoulders hunched forward.. Oopss!!! So train all the muscles around a joint or do compound exercises
Now a good trainer, makes a workout plan, based on this philosophy of muscular balance
Ohh yeaa also want to tell you what is the difference between a strain and a sprain
Strain is the muscular pain due to overloading of a muscle. If you do only running, you quads will have strain. but if you tear or rupture your ligament then that gives sprain.
Now the question is suppose you have developed a pain and now you want to know how to deal with a sprain or a strain?
When there is strain/overload then stop overloading your muscles for sometime, give them rest and when you resume then resume with a technique mentioned above( strengthen all muscles equally). Whereas if there is a sprain then rest plus do mild exercises which work on strengthening the muscles around.
Also one very important thing to note is that every joint has its own plane of motion for example knee joint can only do the bending motion the lower legs so when we do any motion other than the joint’s allowed motion then there are a high chances of ligament tear. This unless your muscles are really strong.
Let me explain the above two points with my example
My knee got twisted because I placed my foot wrongly on a rock. My ligament got ruptured as I performed a twist motion which is not allowed for a knee joint and I suppose that my muscles were not strong enough to handle the twist. Since I knew that it was a strain so I decided to take rest and do exercises which will help strengthen the muscles around the knees. So I did knee bends instead of squats. As knee bends are less load bearing as compared to the squats. And they strengthen the muscles around the knees. Even beginners can do knee bends before proceeding to squats
I have tried to show the difference between a squat and a knee bend.. Sorry for blurry pics, mom took them
The main difference between a squat and a knee bend is that in squat toes are straight, pointing forward, and are shoulder distance apart. When you go down sitting, like sitting on a chair then the knees bends straight in the direction of the toes. As shown
In knee bends the toes are shoulder width apart, the toes are opened outwards and while squatting down, the knees also move outwards in the direction of the toes.
Please make sure that the knees should never cross the toes in squat as well as in the knee bend. If you have high knee pain then you can do knee bends with the help of a chair. Bend only as deep as it is comfortable for you and then progress slowly to the version I have shown above.
I want to share more on injuries but this articles has already gotten so long. Please let me know if this was useful then I will share similar articles on ankle, spine, back, shoulder and knee injuries. Since most of the theory is covered here so they will be more exercise specific.
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