3 Common Netball Injuries And How To Prevent Them

If you’ve watched, played or known a netballer, chances are you have seen or experienced an ankle, knee or low back injury. Netball is a fast paced game that involves lots of stop/start movements, quick changes of direction and plenty of jumping. These movements place a lot of pressure on the low back, hips, knee and ankle joints and can often cause injury.

Ankle injuries

Ankle sprains are the one of most common injuries in netball. It occurs when the ligaments of the ankle are overstretched when landing awkwardly, stepping on someone else’s foot or even simply changing direction. The severity of the injury can vary from a minor sprain to full rupture of the ligaments and tendons. The most common symptoms of an ankle sprain are swelling on the outer aspect of the ankle which is accompanied with bruising and pain. In the most severe cases, fractured bones of the ankle may occur.

Knee injuries

Netball is often the cause of many knee injuries, the most common being an injury to the ACL (anterior cruciate ligament). This is often teamed up with MCL (medial collateral ligament) and medial meniscus damage. These injuries are often caused by fast changes in direction or landing awkwardly and often require surgical interventions. Our osteopaths and myotherapists may help the management and rehabilitation processes by correcting the dysfunctions that occur throughout the hips and low back as a result of injury. Other common injuries of the knee are patello-femoral dysfunctions or “patella tracking” issues. These are generally caused by overactive and tight quadricep muscles and ITB (iliotibial band) dysfunctions.

Low back injuries

Due to the stop/start nature of netball, and heavy landing that sometimes occurs, the low back cops a lot of pressure, resulting in low back pain and stiffness. The muscles supporting the spine often become tight and sometimes a sprain to the facet joints occur. This may be as a result of poor glute strength and core stability.

How can these injuries be treated?

All netball injuries are treated vastly different. Depending on the extent of the injury, our practitioners may refer for imaging to rule out fractures and rupture of ligaments and tendons. If necessary, we will refer to specialist and work alongside to aid in the rehabilitation process. In more minor injuries, our Osteopaths, Myotherapist and Podiatrist work together to reduce inflammation and increase mobility that may have occurred as a result of the injury, you’ll be up and running in no time!

How can they be prevented?

Clinical Pilates is one of the best ways to prevent injury. The team at Beyond work together to identify areas of weakness and/or instability. From here, we create a Pilates program, custom to individual needs to create strength and stability to prevent future injuries. Our team of Osteopaths, Myotherapist and Podiatrist also work together to correct dysfunctions within the body to avoid injuries in the future and to help you maintain full health.

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