5 Common Basketball Injuries
Whether you shoot hoops with your friends every once in a while or play basketball professionally, you are, unfortunately, always at risk of receiving an injury when you engage in any kind of physical activity. While you can rarely predict an injury, you can be prepared for them by understanding the common injuries that affect basketball players and knowing how to prevent them.
Common Basketball Injuries
Here are some areas of the body that are commonly injured from playing basketball.
Since your feet are the point of contact between you and the floor, this can be a particularly common area for injuries due to the sharp pivots and sudden movements required for basketball. While legs in general are at the most risk for injury in the sport, the feet and ankles are where such injuries most commonly occur. The best way to prevent foot and ankle injuries is to make sure you have the right foot support to move about quickly and freely. This means ensuring you have proper, well-fitting shoes is essential. You may even want to tape up your ankles with athletic tape before a game if you’d like to be extra cautious.
While major knee injuries are more often experienced in full contact sports, they certainly aren’t out of question in basketball and could very well happen to any player. Minor knee injuries are fairly common and are usually designated to sprains and strains. The best way to prevent a basketball-related knee injury is to strengthen your leg muscles while training and stretch thoroughly before playing.
Injuries to hip and thigh areas are also incredibly common due to basketball players’ frequent running, pivoting, and jumping while playing. Hip and thigh injuries either happen from contact or overextension. While there’s no concrete way to prevent contact injuries, stretching before you play is the best way to prevent an overextension injury to the hip or thigh.
Wrist and hand injuries are far less common in basketball than leg injuries, but still happen frequently since the sport is primarily played with the hands. As the basketball is quickly passed from player to player, fingers can jam, sprain, and fracture if the ball is caught improperly. Such injuries can also happen through contact with another player, so the best way to prevent them is to be aware of yourself and others while playing. The less contact you make with others, the better.
Head and neck injuries are thankfully less common than the other listed basketball injuries; however, they can still occur due to the lack of proper head protection equipment in the sport. Back injuries can occur due to the frequent twisting, pivoting, and bending movements required in the agile sport. If you suspect a back injury may have occurred from playing basketball, it’s best to rest and apply ice to the inflamed area. It’s also critical to look for signs of a concussion after a head injury and investigate spinal or nerve damage following a neck or back injury since they can be very dangerous.
The best action to take following a serious basketball injury is to seek the opinion of an orthopaedic professional.
Bounce Back Safely and Quickly Following a Sports Injury
If you’ve sustained a basketball-related injury, our expert sports medicine team at Orthopaedic Associates of St. Augustine is fully equipped to help treat the injury and get you back on your feet in no time. To learn more about our services or to request an appointment, visit us online or give us a call today at 904-825-0540.
Kurtis Hort, MD
Diplomate of the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery and a member of the American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society. Dr. Hort specializes in reconstructive procedures of the foot and ankle.
Sina Kasraeian, MD
Board Certified by the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery and has extensive training in arthroscopy and sports medicine reconstructive procedures.