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The Top 10 Sports & Exercise Injuries and How to Prevent Them

written by: aperson910 • edited by: Cheryl Gabbert • updated: 5/24/2011

This article highlights the top 10 injuries in sports, and gives tips on how to avoid them.

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    The Top 10 Injuries in Sports & Exercise

    In the world of sports and exercise, injuries are bound to occur. However some body parts are more susceptible to injury. In this article we will discuss the top ten injuries in sports and athletics, and how you can prevent them.

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    # 10: Achilles Tendinitis

    Coming in at number 10 is Achilles Tendinitis. The Achilles tendon is located on the back of the ankle and is the biggest tendon in the body. This ailment is common among people who jump a lot (basketball & volleyball players and gymnasts for example). It occurs from over use Achilles tendon. The over use causes the tendon to become inflamed, causing it to become off center. If left untreated jumping will become impossible.

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    Preventing Achilles Tendinitis

    To stave off this condition there are several things you can do. First buy quality shoes that are designed specifically for your sport. Be sure to replace them in a timely manor. Worn out shoes increase the odds of an injury occurring in any sporting situation. Second, include weight training in your exercise regimen. Lifting weights helps to build strength and improve flexibility therefore reducing the risk of injury. Third, be sure to add variety to your fitness routine, as not to overwork one particular body part.

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    # 9: Groin Sprain/Pulled Groin Muscle

    The number nine contender is the Groin Sprain or Pulled Groin Muscle. Specifically the adductor muscles and supporting ligaments. As with all sprains or muscle pulls, it occurs when the supporting ligaments or muscles are suddenly jerked or twisted outside of their normal range of motion. The common way to sprain/pull a groin ligament/muscle is to quickly turn the other way while running. Weight lifters often suffer sprain/pulled groin muscles when they lift weights that they can not control, squatting too heavy for instance.

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    How To Prevent Sprain/Pulled Groin Muscle

    You can try to avoid groin sprains by properly warming the muscle up before stretching or exercising. Anything low-impact will do (jogging). The warm up should last at least 3 minutes. Another precautionary step that can be taken is to ease into any new program or regimen and allow your body to get used to it.

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    # 8: The Concussion

    Landing at number 8 is the Concussion. A concussion occurs when a person receives a severe blow to the head, either by falling on it or getting hit in it. Concussions tend to occur with hockey & football players, boxers, and even gymnasts. The best way to avoid a concussion is to avoid contact sports. Other than that, being sure that all head gear fits well and is secured properly is the only precaution that can be taken.

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    How To Prevent Concussions

    The best way to avoid a concussion is to avoid contact sports. Other than that, being sure that all head gear fits well and is secured properly is the only precaution that can be taken.

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    # 7: Shin Splints

    Holding down the number 7 spot is shin splints. Shin splints occur when the muscle that surrounds the inner ankle bone becomes inflamed. This condition occurs most often when people first begin an exercise regimen. They can also occur when one drastically increases the intensity or duration of a regimen.

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    How To Avoid Shin Splints

    Although it may not be possible to avoid shin splints all together when beginning an exercise program, you can take steps to try and lessen the severity of the pain. First make sure that you wear a shoe that is appropriate for your activity and replace them in a timely manner. Second ease into a new routine. A gradual increase in intensity and duration is always the best choice.

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    # 6: Sprain Ankle

    At number six is the infamous ankle sprain. It occurs when the ankle is violently twisted past its normal range of motion. This injury is most common in sports that involve a lot of jumping or quickly changing directions. Severe sprains can result in ligaments or tendons being completely severed.

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    How To Prevent Sprained Ankels'

    As you can’t tell when you take off for a lay-up that you are going to land on another players foot, there really is no way to try and prevent an ankle sprain other than being cautious and strengthening the ankle joint.

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    # 5: Tennis Elbow

    Number 5 is tennis elbow. Tennis elbow is the inflammation of the tendons, ligaments, and muscles around the elbow and forearm. It usually strikes golfers or tennis players due to the repetitive swinging motions.

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    How To Prevent Tennis Elbow

    One can try to prevent this condition by improving your swinging technique. Performing exercises to strengthen your forearm (wrist curls, reverse curls) can also help prevent this injury.

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    # 4: Lower Back Pain

    The number 4 injury is lower back pain. There are many different types of lower back injuries. Bulging disks, spasms, and pulled sciatica’s are all qualifying injuries.

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    How To Prevent Lower Back Pain

    In sports and exercise, the most common reason for back pain is lack of stretching. Therefore lower back injuries could be avoided if athletes would properly warm up and stretch the muscles in the lower back before beginning any activity.

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    # 2: Shoulder Injury

    The runner up most common injury is the shoulder injury. Because the shoulder joint moves and rotates in all three planes, it is very susceptible to injury. Shoulder sprains, strains, and dislocations are all very common shoulder movement injuries in baseball, volleyball, tennis.

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    How To Prevent Shoulder Injuries

    The best way to try and prevent all of the injuries listed above is to strengthen the muscles around the shoulder and rotator cuff as much as possible. Increasing the flexibility of the joint is also a great idea.

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    # 1: Runners Knee

    And finally the number one sports injury is….runners knee. It is by far the most common injury as it is classified as any pain in or around the knee cap. Because the definition is so broad, it includes ailments such as torn ligaments and unstable kneecaps. Runner’s knee usually begins with the overuse of the knee joint. It can develop into anything from arthritis to an unstable knee.

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    How To Prevent Runners Knee

    The best way to prevent this is to keep the best shoes possible. Always make sure the shoes that you are wearing are not or old or worn down. Also, try to avoid running on concrete or other extremely hard surfaces.