There’s always that lure to go a little overboard, especially once the sun begins to shine, or there’s that fresh powdering of snow. That’s usually enough motivation to get most couch potatoes out on the move to become more physically active.
The extra activity is obviously excellent steps for improving one’s cardiovascular fitness, while toning up the muscles and experiencing weight loss. But it can come to a screeching halt, especially if your fitness level is in the “weekend warrior” mode.
Even for those who consider themselves fairly fit, and decide that they can run a 10k, enter a triathlon, or join a baseball league, this can all easily lead towards the most common sports related injuries.
These types of injuries involve inflammation of the tendons, which can lead towards pain and prolonged joint stiffness. Bursitis and tendonitis are also common mishaps, which is usually known as RICE. Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation.
The Most Common Injuries Of The Weekend Athlete
When Running Be Aware Of Plantar Fasciitis
Plantar fasciitis refers to inflammation and pain which occurs on the bottom of the foot. This can occur from either jumping, running, or even walking.
It can be as simple as standing around all day at the amusement park, playing a pickup basketball game, or playing tennis, which can have you coming up sore the next morning.
The actual plantar fascia, which is on the bottom of the foot is a thick fibrous tissue which runs from the heel all the way to the base of the toes. If you happen to wear improper shoes which don’t provide the proper arch support, that can potentially lead to the condition.
It just doesn’t plague those who may have flat feet, or those with extremely high arches, but other causes can be improper uneven weight distribution on the foot.
The easiest solution may be those commercial arch supports, but if you find the condition much more serious, you may need custom made orthotics. If you stretch your foot by doing calf and hamstring stretches on a daily basis, this before any activity, doing so can usually relieve or prevent this common yet painful condition.
Say Ouch To Achilles Tendonitis
Achilles tendonitis is common to those ground activities which involves heavy pounding on the legs, such as, tennis, basketball, soccer, running, walking, etc.
The foot bone, which is connected to the ankle bone, means that you’re able to get both plantar fasciitis as well as Achilles tendonitis at the same time.
If you do any activity which requires constant running, jumping, rapid starts and sudden stopping motions, or having to quickly change directions, these can lead towards this common condition.
Once waking up in the morning, if it feels a bit stiff, or you’re not able to push off with your toes properly when you walk, and as a result, you begin tip-toeing, which further elicits the pain, this could be the first sign.
When you do tip-toe, the Achilles tendon may feel like it’s grinding, or feel a bit “crunchy” when stepping. What that indicates is inflammation in the tendon. If it’s not treated properly, or immediately, it can potentially lead towards the Achilles tendon being ruptured.
Knowing Signs Of Trochanteric Bursitis
The symptoms of trochanteric bursitis is an inflamed bursa, which is found on the side of the hip. This injury can result from active walking, running, stair climbing, biking, etc.
For those who are involved or just starting out in these sports, or similarly related motion activities, hip bursitis can develop. This pain is felt directly on the outside of the hip, located on the point of the hip bone.
Any sudden increase of activity which involves this area can irritate as well as inflame the bursa, once the flexors pass over it. Hip bursitis also develops with ITB syndromw, or Iliotibial Band Syndrome.
Recognizing Tennis Elbow
Lateral epicondylitis, which is better known as tennis or golf elbow, usually occurs when golf, tennis, or baseball is played.
This type of pain is usually on the inside or the outside of the elbow, depending on the condition. If you mimic the action of a tennis backhand, you can then determine which tendon is affected. If it’s golfer’s elbow, the pain is usually felt directly on the inside of the elbow.
So joining the boys at the tennis court can potentially lead towards debilitating pain, as well as stiffness in the elbow. The direct motion of the wrist, as well as the forearm, when golfing, playing tennis or baseball, can cause swelling in the tendons of the forearm and wrist.
Also, doing sudden weekend home improvement projects can also cause elbow pain, especially if it involves hammering nails, which can lead towards tennis elbow. Both of these conditions can effect grip strength, while making simple things like turning door knobs more difficult.
Rotator Cuff And Bicep Tendonitis
Rotator cuff tendonitis occurs when the tendons become inflamed in the shoulder, while bicep tendonitis is the pain located in the front of the shoulder. Activities which leads to this pain include: tennis, swimming, strength training, boxing, etc.
Bicep tendonitis is usually caused by activities which requires shoulder extension, or rotation, or by placing stress directly on the bicep tendon near the shoulder.
The tendonitis occurs because of shoulder instability along with weakness when there’s a sudden increase of activity in that area.
The activities which causes bicep tendonitis can also cause rotator cuff tendonitis, as both of these conditions are caused by a weakening rotator cuff.
When you have improper exercise form, that can also be the cause of rotator cuff tendonitis. The rotator cuff tendons run directly underneath the acromion, which is the bony point of the shoulders.
Signs of this condition include, once you lift your arm straight out, either directly in front or to the side, it will cause pain and stiffness in the shoulder. The reason being that the inflamed tendon is rubbing on the bone, or is becoming trapped in the tendon.
Once the rotator cuff tendonitis becomes chronic, it can potentially lead towards what’s known as a frozen shoulder, and if it’s not treated properly, it can lead towards surgery and extended physical therapy.
These types of injuries can usually be avoided, or made not as severe, by increasing the physical activity slower, using proper form and technique, and knowing the signs.
Do research or ask your athletic trainer for effective exercises, stretches, as well as preventative treatment of the particular injury, which can potentially keep you off the playing field.