Sports encourage physical activity, strategic thinking, teamwork, and fun. However, the CDC reports that collision sports, like basketball, generate 80% of sports-related emergency room visits for children aged 5-14.
Though both children and adults can suffer injuries from playing basketball, this does not mean that you should refrain from participating in the sport. Instead, you should learn about the common injuries in basketball and how to avoid them. Prepare yourself to play!
Avoiding 5 Common Injuries in Basketball
Avoid making a fast break to your local urgent care center due to a sports injury. Read on to learn 5 of the most common injuries in basketball and how you can avoid them.
1. Lateral Ankle Sprains
An NBA injury study reported that lateral ankle sprains plague professional basketball players more than any other injury. This means that basketball commonly injures the ligaments located on the outer ankle.
This injury can occur as the player goes up for a layup, comes down from the shot, or pivots. The ligament sustains injury as the weight shifts over the outside border of the foot, causing the ankle to quickly roll inward.
To prevent this type of sprain:
- stretch and exercise feet to promote dorsiflexion (toe to face movement)
- wear properly fitting high tops
- practice walking with your weight balanced toward the big toe rather than the pinky, to shift your natural center of gravity
Avoiding this injury can prevent you from sitting the bench for the next 2-4 weeks and save you a trip to an urgent care center for treatment.
2. Patellofemoral Inflammation
Players often suffer knee injuries in basketball. This frightening word can keep players on the bench for 6 weeks or more. It refers to inflammation in the knee cap that causes a dull, aching pain.
Basketball often causes this injury as the high impact sport produces requires a ton of running, jumping, crouching, and sudden positional changes that add pressure and throw the knee off balance. Avoid this injury by strengthening your quads with leg presses and by doing lateral leg raises to strengthen your abductor muscles.
3. Face Injuries
Elbows and a ball fly around during this fast-paced game, putting you at risk for facial injuries. People sustain everything from broken noses to damaged teeth.
In order to prevent facial injuries in basketball, stay vigilant on the court. Losing focus for even a moment can result in an injury. Also, you may want to wear a mouthguard to protect your teeth, and athletic glasses to protect your eyes.
Concussions occur when a blow to the head or face causes the brain to move. They can range from mild, causing little to no symptoms, to severe, creating life-altering damage.
Basketball players may suffer concussions when they get hit with an elbow, ball, or another player’s head, or fall to the ground. As with preventing facial injuries, vigilance helps when near and around the court.
5. Muscle Injuries
During the game, you use a variety of muscles all over the body. Over-stretching can strain or tear a muscle during the game.
This will lead to pain, inflammation, and possibly days to weeks of bench time, depending on the severity of the injury. To avoid muscle injuries, keep yourself in good shape by working out all of your muscle groups regularly. Avoid overusing muscles though, as this can also lead to injuries.
Make a Fast Break to Urgent Care
On the court, your goal is to avoid common injuries in basketball. However, even your best efforts can fail during such an intense sport.
If you do get hurt during the game, urgent care can promptly take care of your non-emergency injuries. Visit our urgent care for any of these services!