Articles on sports

Sports Injuries In Young Athletes - An Overview

Dr. Senthilvelan.R, Orthopedist
The prevalence of injuries in young athletes is on the rise as more and more young children take upon more intense sports training. There are multi factorial reasons which contribute to overuse injuries in young athletes. Targeted interventions are necessary in prevention of these injuries.Children have numerous benefits when they stay active and physically fit by participating in sports, however there is concern regarding safety of intense sports participation of young athletes. Almost 1/3rd to 50 percent of injuries in this age group is as a result of overuse.Chronic overuse injuries are generally defined as injuries that occur because of increased levels of physiological stress without sufficient recovery time. A number of prevention strategies are available to prevent which target the athlete's neuro-muscular control mechanisms to reduce the likelihood of injury.Numbers of extrinsic risk factors are often implicated in over use injuries. These can occur in a number of scenarios. In the first scenario the athlete may attempt to rapidly increase training load after period of inactivity and this could result in stress fractures. In this situation the body does not have enough time to adapt to higher level of stress and is not adequately prepared to dissipate repetitive forces.A second scenario is when an athlete attempts to participate at a level that exceeds individual’s skill level. There could be potential mismatch between skill and fitness level to that of imposed physical demand and can potentially lead to injury.Coaches or PT masters at school should understand the physical fitness levels of children at school and design training in a  way to provide appropriate progression of training.Ways to prevent Overuse injuries:1. A young athlete needs to be assessed in regards to readiness of running and his/hers relative risk of running related injury. Determining the fitness level before running, length of running and prior running injuries and previous sports needs to be documented.2. Modifying training volumes for athletes who have recently undergone growth spurts are recommended to reduce stress on growing bones.3. Provision of individualized training programs taking into account their fitness level, and injuries._______________________________________________________________________________________

6 Ways to Avoid Sports Injuries

Mr. Kaleem Mohammed, Physiotherapist
Most of us like to play some or the other sports. As long as we are injury free, it is always great fun, but sometimes sports injuries may take place, which can be a bummer!Sports injuries are commonly classified into trauma/acute injuries and overuse/stress injuries. The difference between the two is simple. Trauma injuries are due to a sudden twist or pull, or any other impact. Stress or overuse injuries occur when a part of our body is over-exercised without enough rest in between.Many lists describe the most common sports injuries in men. These lists have minor disagreements, but in general, they agree that the most frequent sports injuries are sprains (tearing of ligaments) and strains (over-stretching or tearing of muscles or tendons). Bruises or contusions are also a common result of trauma, but bruises rarely cause serious complications.Most common sports injuries include:BruisesKnee joint injuries: Pain, swelling, and stiffness ligaments or tendons injuriesAnkle sprain: Sprain, strains, fractures.Cuts and abrasionsDehydration: Excessive fluid loss causes heat exhaustion and heat stroke.Groin pull/strain: Symptoms include pain and swelling.Hamstring strain: Symptoms are a pain, swelling and bruising.Stress fractures: The impact of repeated jumps or running on hard surfaces can stress and break bones.Playing sports is much fun. Getting hurt is not.Follow these 6 steps to prevent injuries so you can stay in the game:1. Warm UpIt is not a good concept to just bolt on to the field and start playing. You should not even start stretching until you are a little warmed up. So take a light jog to get loosened up and ready to play. Increasing the heart rate and circulation; this loosens the joints and increases blood circulation to the muscles. Full-Body Stretch helps muscles to prepare them for physical activity and prevents injuries.2. Wear Protective GearProtective gears are anything you wear that helps keep you from injuries. The gear you use depends on the type of sports.The helmet is a most frequently used protective shield. It keeps you safe from head injuries when you are playing football, cricket, ice hockey, or baseball. Make sure you are wearing the right and comfortable helmet for your sport. Other sports require eye protection, mouth guards, pads, wrist, elbow, and knee guards, and a protective cup (for boys only). Moreover, don't forget your feet. Shin-guards are a must have gear for preventing trauma induced fractures in sports such as soccer and hockey.3. Proper healthy nutritionHealthy nutrition can enhance sporting performance because protein rich diet should provide enough protein to promote muscle mass growth and injury repair. Water is an excellent choice of fluid for athletes to help performance and prevent dehydration. Foods rich in unrefined carbohydrates, like whole grain bread and cereals, should form the basis of the diet.4. Early intervention and restMost of the sports injuries such as painful pulled muscle or sprains and strains are treated immediately with R.I.C.E. (rest, ice, compression, and elevation) protocol.Many sports physical therapists and athletes remember this short-form to help with sports injuries.Rest (minimizes motion and pressure over of the injured joint)Icing (apply an ice pack) to reduce pain and swelling and decrease blood flow to injured areaCompression (light pressure wrap to stop bleeding and swelling)Elevation (to drain the fluids from injured area to prevent swelling)5. Slow-fast-slow RhythmDuring physical activities, adding interval (slow-fast-slow) training into your exercise routine helps to improve your heart’s ability to beat at a high rate for prolonged periods. That is a real plus for your aerobic fitness. Moreover, oxygen is circulated in your body at a slower rate, so it increases your ability for a longer stay during workouts. The simple rule is that always warm up before any sports or exercise, and always cool down at the end by gently stretching your muscles and breathing out slowly.Further, when starting any weight bearing exercise after a while, always take precaution that you do not start off with a heavyweight, but a much lighter one that you can easily exercise with. Don’t worry if anyone is looking!If you manage to follow these simple five rules, you can easily avoid most types of sports injuries and continue to enjoy the sports you like.6. Do not over-stretch yourselfIt is critical to take part in physical activities, to listen to your body and know your physical limits. When you begin a new sport, begin steadily and slowly to avoid muscle pull. If you have not undertaken a strenuous exercise for some time, it is especially crucial to building up your endurance and strength gradually to avoid injury. It is essential when taking part in physical activities, to listen to your body and know your physical limits.

5 Important Things to Prevent Sports Injuries

Dr. Shekhar Srivastav, Orthopedist
Sports is being taken up by more & more people especially young ones as hobby & profession. With Gyms & fitness centres mushrooming across the country, there is a rush among general population to train hard becoming physically fit. Being fit definitely increases the productivity & also makes the person feel good about themselves. But this has also seen a spurt in sports related injuries in these group of people. Most common cause of injuries are due to overuse. These can be avoided if certain simple rules are followed.You cannot become fit overnight by starting exercises and pushing your body beyond its limit to get quick results. Most athletes & sports persons have years of training & hard work behind them to reach this level. Increase the intensity & duration of your exercises gradually in a phased manner to get desired result.Warm-up- Proper warm-up before starting any sports is essential to prevent injury. Warm-up increases the blood flow to the muscles, stretches muscles, increases flexibility to prevent injuries.Strengthening- Strengthening of required muscles is essential for balance & power during the sporting activity. Weak muscles may increase the stress on other parts of the body leading to problems.Stretching- Stiff joints are more prone to injuries during sports. Stretching of ligaments & tendons & flexibility of joints can prevent that.Rest- Rest is very important to allow the tissues to repair & recover. One should always have a rest day in a week in your training schedule to allow your tissues to heal.

5 Sports to Lose Weight

Ms. Swati Kapoor, Dietitian/Nutritionist
Working out in the gym can get repetitive and boring- getting your cardio in, finishing your sets. So, why not play a sport, have fun with friends while you're at it, and lose weight and gain muscle! We've got a list of sports for you, that are incredible workouts and can help you lose the flab.Soccer/Football: One of the most common sports around the world, it is a phenomenal workout. During the course of a football game, you are running a significant distance, you're sprinting, slowing down, tackling, stopping, jumping and maybe even falling. All these movements give your body a really strenuous workout. Wonder why you've never seen a fat soccer player?Basketball: Let the smaller court not fool you about what a workout this sport is. Its not just the movements of soccer, it also involves lots of jumping that gives you power and helps grow muscle and reduce flab. Throwing the ball around gives your arms and upper body a really good workout. Have you seen those muscular arms on basketball players?Squash & Badminton: Both these racquet sports involve agile movement of your whole body, for the length of the game. And that can really help you burn the calories.Swimming: Not really a sport, but since we talk so much about running, we should tell you about the wonders of swimming. Its a great calorie burning exercise, and its no impact. So, you can safely call it among the best cardio workouts.Besides, all these sports, there are few others that are not so common but are really effective calorie burning workouts and help build muscle-Ultimate Frisbee: Full body workout and incredibly active. Skiing: Seems easy, but is a total body workout and burns calories like no other. Boxing: Can get you in the best shape of your life!So, what's your sport?

Sports Make You Fit & Improve Your Professional Skills

Ms. Swati Kapoor, Dietitian/Nutritionist
Playing a sport is a fun activity and keeps you fit mentally and physically. It engages the mind and body while energizing and de-stressing you at the same time. All sports keep you active and improve blood flow in the body. Whether you are good at playing the sport or not it will always benefit you and improve your fitness level. Playing any sport builds self-confidence develops your personality and infact helps you understand yourself better. Most successful people enjoy playing a sport and even use it as an opportunity to network with other professionals. Being good at a sport can help you also get successful professionally as it helps develop & sharpen essential traits like competition, strategy, and desire to win in an individual.Playing a sport is a great workout for the body as it improves breathing while working the muscles in the body. It drastically improves your endurance, strength, stamina and helps build lean muscles. Besides for some people, it is more engaging and exciting than going to a gym. To help you get better at a sport that you enjoy as a hobby or a fitness routine we have put together a few tips to improve your performance at the sport and enjoy more benefits.Warm-up: Before you get into the game do some warm-ups as it will activate the entire body by the increasing the blood flow. A Warm-up reduces the chances of muscle cramps and preparing the body for the main event. This warm-up also makes you burn some calories which are an addition to the calorie burn during workouts.Practice: Before you get into actually playing the sports practice a few shots or get the movements and postures correct to do them right in the sport. Like if you are going to play football, kick around the ball and try to get the feel of it. Practice different strokes, positions, and styles to play a quality game. This also burns extra calories plus involves you more into the sport for a higher intensity workouts. Ask friends to Join: We all love our friend's company as it lets the time fly and we enjoy the moments with them. Involving friends make you work out more than you would with strangers. Friends will keep you motivated and you could make your own team for that sport to enjoy it more.Stretching: After you have done playing don’t get under the shower to relax your body. Cool, your body with stretching exercise which helps the muscles to relax and stretches to avoid muscle pulse, pain, and cramps. Do all the stretching exercise which will keep your muscles relaxed.Play at a moderate intensity initially to avoid overstressing of muscles and running out of breath. Build stamina first and try to do more every time you play. Learn breathing techniques while playing the sport to avoid getting tired quickly.

Mouthguards

Dr. Pankaj Rao, Dentist
A mouthguard is a protective device for the mouth that covers the teeth and gums to prevent and reduce injury to the teeth, arches, lips and gums. A mouthguard is most often used to prevent injury in contact sports, as a treatment for bruxism or TMD, or as part of certain dental procedures, such as tooth bleaching. Mouth guards are an important piece of athletic equipment for anyone participating in a sport that involves falls, body contact or flying equipment. This includes football, basketball, baseball, soccer, hockey, skateboarding, gymnastics, mountain biking — any activity that might result in an injury to the mouth.    FUNCTIONS OF MOUTHGUARDS In their book Textbook and Color Atlas of Traumatic Injuries to the Teeth, Andreasen and Andreasen8 list 8 basic mouthguard functions:(1) Mouthguards prevent laceration and bruising during impact by acting as a buffer between the soft tissues of the lips and cheeks and the teeth.(2) Mouthguards prevent tooth fractures or dislocations by cushioning the teeth from direct frontal blows while redistributing the forces of impact.(3) Opposing teeth are protected from seismic contact with each other.(4) The mandible is afforded elastic, recuperative support that can prevent fracture or damage to the unsupported angle of the lower jaw.(5) Mouthguards help reduce neurologic injury by acting as shock absorbers between the upper and lower jaws. Without a mouthguard, the trauma of the jaws violently jarring together can distribute the impact from the condyles of the mandible against the base of the skull, resulting in concussion.(6) Mouthguards can provide positive reinforcement in the prevention of neck injuries.9(7) Mouthguards provide a psychologic benefit to athletes. Findings suggest athletes feel more confident and aggressive when they have the proper protection.10(8) Mouthguards fill edentulous spaces and thereby help support adjacent teeth. This allows removable prostheses to be taken out during athletic competition.                                                                                                                                                                                               Types of mouth-guards:Custom-fitted - Built and fitted to the shape of your mouth by a related professional. These mouthguards have been proven to reduce the number and extreme harshness of mouth injuries in sport and during training.Boil and bite-once the lining is softened in boiling water, the person bites on the mouthguard to help it take the shape of their mouth. The process of biting down onto the softened lining can decrease the guard thickness and therefore its effectiveness. These mouthguards can be uncomfortable to wear. Ready-made -these are ready to wear available over the counter at sports shopsand chemists. While these are the cheapest mouthguard, they also offer the least amount of protection. They are (taking up a lot of space for its  weight) and hard to keep in the mouth due to their poor fit.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Custom made mouthguards Teeth related Health Services Victoria (DHSV) recommends custom fitted mouthguards as these provide the most effective protection.A custom made mouthguard should: Fit snugly and be comfortable Allow (usual/commonly and regular/ healthy) breathing and swallowing Allow the wearer to speak Be odorless and (having no taste/rude and offensive) Be thick enough (4mm) to provide protection against hit/effect. Caring for your mouthguard case- 1)Take the mouthguard along to your teeth-related visits to secure/make sure of it still fits correctly. A mouthguard may need to be replaced as changes occur in your mouth, such as the eruption of permanent teeth or restoration.                                                         2)Mouthguards need to be rinsed in cold water before use. After use, dry and store in a plastic  container with air vents to allow the air to circulate. 3)Once in a while, clean it with soapy water and rinse completely.4)Mouthguards should be kept in a cool place as they can distort if left in the sun or hot water. 5)Remember: Mouthguards should be worn during training sessions and match play if there is a risk of contact with another person or object including balls, bats, sticks or racquets. fig-1 custom and boil&bite mouth-guardMouth guards should ideally be replaced after each season because they can wear down over time, making them less effective. Replacement is especially important for adolescents because their mouths continue to grow and teeth continue to develop into adulthood. Many athletes who play several sports have new mouth guards made when they go for their six-month dental checkup.Summary Dentists are encouraged to ask patients if they participate in team sports or other activities with risks of injury to the teeth, jaw and oral soft tissues (mouth, lip, tongue, or inner lining of the cheeks). The council  recommend that people of all ages use aproperly fitted mouthguard in any sporting or recreational activity that may present/cause a risk of injury. 

Sports Make You Fit & Amp; Improves Your Professional Skills

Ms. Swati Kapoor, Dietitian/Nutritionist
Playing a sport is a fun activity and keeps you fit mentally and physically. It engages the mind and body while energizing and de-stressing you at the same time. All sports keep you active and improve blood flow in the body. Whether you are good at playing the sport or not it will always benefit you and improve  your fitness level. Playing any sport builds self-confidence, develops your personality and infact helps you understand yourself better. Most successful people enjoy playing a sport and even use it as an opportunity to network with other professionals. Being good at a  sport can help you also get successful professionally as it helps develop & sharpen essential traits like competition, strategy and desire to win in an individual.Playing a sport is a great workout for the body as it improves breathing while working the muscles in the body. It drastically improves your endurance, strength, stamina and helps build lean muscles. Besides for some people it is more engaging and exciting than going to a gym. To help you get better at a sport that you enjoy as a hobby or a fitness routine we have put together a few tips to improve your performance at the sport and enjoy more benefits.Tips for weight loss with sportsWarm-up: Before you get into the game do some warm-ups as it will activate the entire body by the increasing the blood flow. Warm-up reduces the chances of muscle cramps and preparing the body for the main event. This warm-up also makes you burn some calories which are an addition to the calorie burn during workouts.Practice: Before you get into actually playing the sport practise a few shots or get the movements and postures correct to do them right in the sport. Like if you are going to play football, kick around the ball and try to get the feel of it. Practise different strokes, positions and styles to play a quality game. This also burns extra calories plus involves you more into the sport for a higher intensity workouts.Ask friends to Join: We all love our friends company as it lets the time fly and we enjoy the moments with them. Involving friends makes you work out more than you would with strangers. Friends will keep you motivated and you could make your own team for that sport to enjoy it more.Stretching: After you have done playing don't get under the shower to relax your body. Cool your body with stretching exercise which helps the muscles to relax and stretch to avoid muscle puls, pain and cramps. Do all the stretching exercise which will keep your muscles relaxed.Play at a moderate intensity initially to avoid over stressing of muscles and running out of breath. Build stamina first and try to do more every time you play. Learn breathing techniques while playing the sport to avoid getting tired quickly.

14 Tips for Avoiding Overuse Strain Injuries

Dr. Vishwas Virmani, Physiotherapist
Here are 14 tips for avoiding overuse strain injuries.Up to 50% of industrial injuries are thought to be attributed to cumulative trauma or overuse injury. These can range from troublesome annoyances, to severe debilitation. For office, building and site managers, there are a number of steps you can take to minimise repetitive strain injury within your workforce.1. Identify and correct postural problems The aim is to eliminate fixed positions which impose static loads on the muscles of the back, neck, shoulders and arms. Poor or improperly-adjusted equipment, furniture or layout is often to blame.2. Identify and eliminate forceful movements The worst are those which involve fingers, hands and wrists, especially with bending or twisting. Check tools, knobs, processes, postures. Do things fit? Is maintenance happening?3. Identify and break up periods of repetitive work The aim is physical variety; use rest pauses and alternated tasks. Consult staff before introducing job rotation.4. Ensure that any tell-tale early-warning signs are noticed and acted upon Supervisors and staff alike will require (a) Training Induction trainingProduction of training videosStrain prevention: training seminars5. Educate supervisors in the recognition and correction of faulty workplace set-out and procedures They should then be accountable for managing this.6. Train staff to recognise and adjust their own workstations properly The benefits of “ergonomic” furniture may otherwise be lost. Be sure to include thorough instruction for all new staff.7. Identify and control work peaks These can be daily, weekly or even annually; individual work loads need monitoring.8. Know which staff are most vulnerable to overuse strain New staff (how thorough is your induction?); those returning from leave; jerky or tense workers; staff using hands and fingers a lot.9. Identify and control sources of individual pressures These may be related to work output requirements, to ‘pacing’ by workmates, to supervisors’ attitudes – or even personal problems. Financial need may push vulnerable staff into harmful overtime. Bonus systems are bad.10. Educate managers, engineers and designers in preventive measures Once they know about ergonomics, they should be able to apply it quickly.11. Carefully-selected tasks matched to individual needs (eg., as specified by a treating doctor) are essential. Close supervision is necessary.13. Keep close to people who are off work sick Letting people know you care about their welfare and recovery will help them a great deal. Weekly phone contact at least; have people come in to collect their pay, and keep them close to their workgroup.14. Keep close to treating doctors Let them know you’re keen to help. Ask them to give specific advice to assist even a partial return-to-work. Invite them to visit you.

Does Lifting Weights Make Women Bulky?

Ms. Swati Kapoor, Dietitian/Nutritionist
Should women lift weights to lose weight? Or will lifting weights make them bulky?Let’s start by getting the basics right. Testosterone is one of the major hormones responsible for increase in muscle size. Women do not, and cannot naturally produce as much testosterone as men do. This also explains the reason why men are leaner and can carry more muscle mass than women. Female bodybuilders with muscular structures have a different training schedule and also take hormonal supplements in order to gain greater muscle mass.Importance of Weight TrainingMost women who workout are seen doing cardiovascular exercises(running,cycling,etc.) and prefer skipping the weight section. Cardio based workouts are improve stamina and heart health but focussing only cardio based exercises can result in muscle loss in the long run. Which essentially means that you will never get a toned physique.Weight training helps in increasing lean muscle and strength. As your strength increases, you are able to do advanced exercises and move on to the next level. Also, it makes you physically stronger and energetic, making you more efficient. Research studies conclude that even moderate weight training can increase a woman's strength by 30 to 50 percent. Research also shows that women can develop their strength at the same rate as men.An increase in lean muscle increases the resting metabolism of the body, thus helping in burning more calories even during rest. For each pound of muscle you gain, you burn 35 to 50 more calories a day.Weight training decreases your risk of osteoporosis. Research has found that weight training can increase spinal bone mineral density (and enhance bone modeling) by 13 percent in six months. This, coupled with an adequate amount of dietary calcium, can be a woman's best defence against osteoporosis.Weight training not only builds stronger muscles, but also builds stronger connective tissues and increases joint stability. This acts as a reinforcement for the joints and helps prevent injury. Studies have indicated that weight training can ease the pain of osteoarthritis and strengthen joints.Weight training can improve cardiovascular health by lowering LDL ("bad") cholesterol, increasing HDL ("good") cholesterol and lowering blood pressure. When coupled with cardiovascular exercise, heart health benefits are maximized.Weight training may improve the way the body processes sugar, which may reduce the risk of diabetes. Adult-onset diabetes is a growing problem around the world. Research indicates that weight training can increase glucose utilization in the body by 23 percent in four months.A Harvard study found that 10 weeks of strength training reduced clinical depression symptoms much more successfully than standard counselling did. Women who do strength training commonly report feeling more confident and capable.The right fitness routine includes a balanced approach in terms of workout and diet. With such an approach women can gradually gain more muscle and improve their body composition, resulting in a toned body with more lean muscle mass and less body fat.

How to Get Rid of Tennis Elbow

Pranjali Chaudhari, Physiotherapist
WHAT EXACTLY IS TENNIS ELBOW???              It is inflammation of common extensor origin where all tendons attached to the bone on lateral epicondyle of the humerus are affected. The primary muscle involved in this condition, the extensor carpi radialis brevis, helps to extend and stabilize the wristCAUSES                                                                                      1: all of a sudden strain due to jerk or stronger contraction of muscle.   2: overuse of common extensor tendon such as “repetitive” gripping and grasping activities.   3:repeated direct external trauma to lateral epicondyle  4: sudden increase in activities that place stress on the forearm extensors (such as involvement in a tennis tournament over consecutive days)Symptoms1: pain associated with activities in which extensor muscles are active, such as lifting, gripping, and/or grasping.2: The pain is located over the outside aspect of the elbow, over the bone region known as the lateral epicondyle.3:With activity, the pain usually starts at the elbow and may travel down the forearm to the hand. Occasionally, any motion of the elbow can be painful.TreatmentModalities such as ultrasound, heat treatments, and interferential therapy will reduce inflammation around extensor tendonsStretching for joint tightness (particularly the wrist, elbow, neck or upper back)Correction of poor postureInclusion of adequate warm-upCorrective rehabilitation of old neck or upper back injuryErgonomic correctionDeveloping work demand related endurance in involved muscle to avoid repetitive strainsGrade 1 exercises for tennis elbowIn tennis players, inappropriate racquet size, grip size, string tension, court surface or ball weight may all contribute to the development of this condition.Proper positioning and handling of a computer mouse.Proprioceptive mobilization of elbowKinesthetic taping with corrected position for extensor tendons