As we are well into the winter sports season when contact sports like rugby union, rugby league, and football are in the spotlight, we hear a lot about soft tissue injuries. These are common whenever and wherever high impact, collision sports are played. At our physio clinics in Auckland, we treat a wide range of soft tissue injuries through conventional physiotherapy treatments as well as our injection therapies – and as one of just two clinics in New Zealand offering this innovative treatment, it’s fair to say we can provide soft tissue treatment that is far more revolutionary and effective than most!
A soft tissue injury typically involves a sprain, strain or direct blow to the muscles, tendons and ligaments. Not every soft tissue injury is sports-related and the biggest risk factor for incurring such an injury is a previous injury. To minimise the likelihood of such a thing occurring to you, particularly on the sports field, the following steps are highly recommended:
- Warming up, stretching and cooling down before and after any activity.
- Do enough speed work during training so your muscles are able to sustain high acceleration forces.
- Including appropriate stretching and strengthening exercises in your regular training programmes.
- Don’t do too much, too soon when training. Gradually increase the intensity and duration of your training.
- Maintain good levels of cardiovascular fitness and endurance to prevent fatigued muscles. This applies as much to everyday life as it does to sporting pursuits.
- Give your muscles, ligaments and tendons plenty of time to recover between workouts or training sessions.
- Wear footwear that fits well and gives you plenty of support and traction for the surface you’re running (or walking) on.
- Invest in good quality protective equipment when playing sport e.g. shin guards
- Drink adequate amounts of water before, during and after your chosen activity. Hydration is always important and given that we drink less water in colder weather, it is important you take in the right amount of fluids, regardless of what you’re doing.
Again, not all soft tissue injuries are sports-related. Mishaps around the home and workplace can cause them too. So, if you’re feeling a bit tender around the muscles, ligaments and tendons for any reason, please contact us as soon as you can. The sooner you can see us, the better off you’ll be in the long run as a prompt response is highly beneficial. With our range of effective treatments, including rare injection therapies, we can get you fully mobile and back into your favourite sport or activity in no time.