Returning to Soccer from an Injury

In one of our recent articles, we looked at ways that you can prevent injuries in soccer. Avoiding injuries is obviously the ideal situation; however, most of the time we simply can’t see them coming, or the forces involved are too large for our bodies to handle no matter what prevention methods we have employed. Fortunately, different sports tend to have patterns of injury, allowing us to design products specifically for those injuries, ultimately speeding up healing time and preventing further re-injury to the affected area. In this article, we will focus on return to play after suffering an injury, and how you can help make your recovery process as quick as possible.

Ligament Sprains – Early Stages

Ligament sprains are arguably the most common injury sustained while playing soccer, with ACL tears and sprained ankles being among the most common forms of ligament injury, particularly in women, who have shown a higher prevalence of ACL injuries when compared to their male peers.

Of course, your injury has to be assessed by a trained medical professional. In the case of a severe tear, such as a full rupture of the ligament, there won’t be too much you can do at first other than rest. This initial stage can be accelerated slightly by having the proper equipment to stabilize the affected joint. For example, the Breg T-Scope is a popular knee brace for post-op care of ACL surgery. This brace can immobilize your knee joint at various angles, and it can also be used with a limited range of motion, so it’s great for times when you simply can’t be laying on the couch. The main downside of this type of brace is that they tend to be quite expensive, so it can often be difficult to take the plunge.

Ligament Sprains – Returning to Activity

Eventually, your physiotherapist will likely begin to prescribe some gentle exercises in order for you to begin regaining a recognizable range of motion, as well as some strength to the muscles surrounding the joint. It really is amazing what a period of immobilization can do to the body, especially when inflammation is involved. Nevertheless, there are some ways you can instill more confidence in your ability to rehab without risking re-injury to the particular ligament.

In this case, braces are still good options, but models like the Breg T-Scope mentioned above will simply be too much and will be unnecessarily restrictive. In this case, braces that provide some level of support, but still allow a relatively free range of motion, can be great options to get you back into the game as quickly as possible. This is especially true when it comes to ankle braces, as there is a higher chance of contact with another person at the ankle joint than the knee joint.

For early stage recovery, you may find that some of the ankle braces that provide the support you need are a little bulky. You may constantly notice this, especially if you are wearing cleats, and your range of motion may still be limited. Don’t let this deter you. If you and a health professional both think a certain level of support and stability is necessary, do not waiver from that, as you could end up with a setback that will make the recovery process way longer.

Once you are feeling a bit closer to normal and have regained a decent range of motion and feel relatively strong, there are lots of ankle braces for cleats that will provide a nice comfortable fit, while also providing a little bit of support to help reduce the risk of re-injury. Many of these braces can actually be work once you feel 100%, and in this case, we are back to using them purely as an injury prevention method.

Summary

Rehabilitating an injury is never this simple, but knowing what is available and how things work can go a long way in assisting your recovery. Education is key, and much of this education can be done at home on your own by browsing around online and looking at an array of injury information as it relates to soccer. Even simple things like learning basic anatomy can help, as you will be able to better identify why certain areas hurt at different times. In any case, we hope the above information will help with your injury recovery, and hopefully we’ll see you back on the pitch sooner rather than later!

Common Soccer Injuries and How to Avoid Them

Soccer is a contact sport and at Vancouver Chiropractic Services, we encounter cases of players both professionals and newbies suffering from its most common injuries. These players want to be back to health the soonest but sometimes, the nature of injuries prevent that from happening. There are times when an injury has a previous cause and this time it’s just compounded. Here are some of the most common injuries that are experienced by soccer players.

  1. Sprain—This is the most common injuries experienced by soccer players. The most affected areas are the knee, lower leg, and ankle. The cruciate ligament is the most common ligament of the knee that gets injured primarily due to lateral movements and pivoting.
  2. Strains—Another common injury is muscle strain. Due to extreme contraction, excessive pulling against a resistance when the muscle is not warmed up enough, muscular injuries can occur. The groin the quadriceps and the hamstring is the most common muscles that get injured among soccer players.
  3. Fractures—Soccer is an activity that involves mostly the lower extremities and this is where fractures are likely to occur. The foot, the ankle, the tibia and fibula are the likely places that fractures occur among soccer players. Wearing protective gear with strong foam padding are strongly advised in order to absorb energy and prevent injuries.
  4. Head injuries—When players collide, injuries occur and its mostly in the head. It can also occur with improper heading technique. When you head the ball in the wrong places, not only does the head gets injured, the neck may also get injured.

Injury Prevention Tips for Soccer Players

What chiropractic care can provide in this case are injury prevention tips so that this can be avoided from happening. One of the most common causes of injuries is bad balance. When the body is out of balance, it will fall down the potentials for injuries are enormous. Chiropractic care improves balance by making corrections on the posture. When the posture is right, balance is right and hence, injuries are avoided.

Neck injuries often occur when you hit the ball with your head. Neck strengthening exercises are necessary to provide enough preparation for heading. You also have to use your hand to provide assistance when you head hits the ball. It is even better if you can wear a mouth guard similar to what boxers use to protect your mouth and teeth.

If you want to prevent injuries, proper warm-up is in order. This is because when the body is prepared for the activities ahead, it will respond in ways that are appropriate. It seems that the body knows the demands that you are about to subject it to when it’s properly warmed up. When it’s languishing, you can expect injuries to occur because its responses are also not good. So in order to prevent injuries from occurring, you have to have proper balance, wear protective gear and warm up adequately.