Knee injuries are very common among athletes. According to the Academy of Emergency Medicine, about 2.5 million adolescents suffer from them every year. The problems can be even worse among older athletes, because the recovery time is much longer and the injuries are less likely to fully heal without surgery. Fortunately, there are a number of ways that you can effectively reduce the risk of suffering a knee injury while participating in sports.
Stopping Sports Knee Injuries
Knee injuries are preventable if you take the right precautions. Here are some tips that you will want to follow before doing any type of high impact activity.
Check the Size of the Equipment that You Are Using
One of the most common mistakes athletes make is wearing the wrong sized equipment. According to Sports Knee Therapy, this is one of the biggest reasons that women over the age of 25 are 150% more likely to suffer from a ski injury.
You need to check all equipment and make sure it fits snugly before wearing it. You will be much less likely to lose your balance and it is less likely to slip if you fall, which means that it will stay in place to protect you properly.
Stretch Your IT Bands
Your iliotibial band (IT band) is the ligament that runs across the outer thigh and connects the hip and the knee. This band often becomes inflamed, resulting in a condition known as iliotibial band syndrome. After it becomes inflamed, it contracts, which can cause it to pull away at the knee.
This can create friction between the knee cap and the femur, which can be painful. However, the real concern is that the disorder leaves you more vulnerable to injury. The sliding kneecap can throw you off balance and make you more susceptible to falls. You can significantly reduce the risk by stretching the IT band at least sixty seconds two to five times a day.
Get Your Technique Down
You need to make sure that you have your technique down carefully before doing any sports. While most formal sports require you to have sufficient training before competing, pickup games and other informal events usually do not. You need to be aware of your own skill level and limitations to make sure that you are capable of competing without risking an injury.
Keeping yourself limber is probably the most important thing that you need to do to avoid knee injuries. Your knees will be less likely to sustain an injury if your muscles are loose, because they won’t contract as much and place as much stress on the joints. You will also be able to fall more gracefully, thereby minimizing the risk of injury.
Protect Your Knees!
Knee injuries are probably the most common problem that athletes face every year. You need to be disciplined about protecting yourself to avoid them. Make sure that you keep yourself in good shape and are adequately prepared. If you ever do sustain an injury, then it is important to get treatment from an expert before the problem progresses.