Learn how some of the most common tennis injuries can be treated and prevented from Arrow Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation in Somerville
Warmer weather brings about what seems like countless opportunities to get outdoors and enjoy it, and for some people, that means grabbing their set of racquets and heading to the nearest tennis court. Tennis is a great aerobic activity that works out many parts of the body and can help you stay in shape. Just like every other sport, though, it also carries with it a risk for certain injuries that can get in the way of playing, and Arrow Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation in Somerville, Woodbridge, Union and Edison, NJ can help treat them.
One of the great things about tennis is that it can be played on a variety of surfaces, such as clay, grass, and hard court. It also requires lots of speed, power, balance and coordination in order to play efficiently. Unfortunately, the combination of these factors—as well as the general repetitive nature of tennis—creates a situation where various injuries to the elbow, wrist, knees and ankles are likely to occur.
The majority of tennis injuries—approximately 67%—are overuse injuries. This means they come about after performing the same motion repeatedly over time, while traumatic injuries are the result of a single incident and account for the other 33%. One of the most common tennis injuries is lateral epicondylitis, also known as tennis elbow, which is an overuse injury of the muscles that help wrist extend. Other common injuries to the upper limbs include rotator cuff tendinitis and wrist strains, which usually occur due to the high velocity of the tennis ball and the repetitive arm motions in tennis.
Injuries to the lower limbs are also very common in tennis and are caused by the sprinting, stopping, pivoting and pounding nature of the sport. These include ankle sprains, knee pain, Achilles tendinitis and tennis toe. Due to the all the rotating of the torso in tennis, back pain and injuries may also come about in some players.
Since most of these injuries are due to overuse, it should be refreshing to know that in many cases they can be minimized or prevented entirely with proper conditioning and techniques that will also improve your game. We recommend the following:
- Maintain adequate fitness and flexibility levels with conditioning exercises that are specific to the physical demands of tennis
- Be sure you’re using proper footwear and equipment; most tennis shoes are more robust than running shoes due to their multi-directional purposes
- Always warm up and stretch before playing, and cool down afterwards
- Avoid over-repetition of any one type of shot; instead, practice a range of strokes
- Perform strengthening exercises, especially for your arms and core muscles, to prevent overuse injuries that occur from weakened muscles
- Have an expert evaluate your gameplay to ensure your techniques are being executed correctly, and focus on improving areas that need work
Don’t let an injury interfere with your time on the tennis court. For more guidance on conditioning and strengthening exercises that will help you prevent an injury, Arrow Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation in Somerville, Woodbridge, Union and Edison, NJ can help. Call us at 908-393-9877 for more information or to schedule an appointment.