Useful Tips for Preventing Soccer Injuries

Soccer injuries are hard to avoid because soccer is a collision sport and injuries do occur sometimes. However, increased knowledge about injuries will help you decrease the risk of getting them.

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That is why I created this guide because I know from experience that knowledge about injuries will not only help you prevent a soccer injury, it will also help your recover faster.

Heading or Not?

There have been some controversial studies claiming that repeated ball heading may cause a brain injury similar to that seen in boxing.

But this is yet to be proven. However, after heading a ball in 15 years my brain power has increased comparing to what is claimed in these studies :-)

Head Banging

This is a common head injury in soccer. It usually occurs when you and an opponent attempt to head the ball at the same moment.

Collision of this type may result in a concussion, a cut or a serious neck injury.

Broken noses, cheeks and jaws are also common. My experience of this injury is an three days head ache and a big black eye :-)

Goalkeeper

As a goalkeeper you are unique in many ways! The frequent diving makes you more likely to injure your shoulder and elbow.

Catching and blocking balls also causes injuries to your wrist and hands. The most typical soccer injuries for a goalkeeper are the finger injuries.

Catching a soccer ball on the top of your finger can really hurt and even result in fractures.

Other soccer injuries that you may need to suffer as goalkeeper are forearm fractures, wrist fractures and sprains.

Lower Back Pain

Lower back pain could be a sign on ligament sprains or even muscle strains. This type of injury will often respond well to traditional treatment (ice, compression, rest and so on).

But, if you feel persistent or recurrent pain in your lower back I recommend you to visit an orthopedic specialist for further evaluation.

Groin

The groin is one of the most common injuries and is really hard to avoid. The best method for healing this type of injury is rest.

If you are unlucky you could be forced to stay off the field for several weeks. One thing you can do to minimize the risk of groin injury is to warm up properly.

Lower Extremity

The lower extremity injury account for more than sixty percent of all injuries. The most dominant injuries occur often to the knees, shins and even ankles.

One thing you can do to minimize the risk of this injury is to always wear correct shoes and right size of shin guards.

Stress fractures and a variety of overuse injuries involving your legs, ankle, and feet in soccer are overuse injuries frequently encountered by soccer players.

Knee

The knee injuries can be mild to varying degrees of severity. Some ligament sprains just require rest, while others may require reconstructive surgery.

If you suffer a real serious knee injury you will usually need approximately six months to recover from it.

Dislocations of the knee-cap are a common soccer injury, especially for female soccer players.

Sometimes braces can be used after an injury to provide increased protection to your knee. You may also use it to prevent a knee injury.

Meniscus tears and ligament injuries are usually a result from pivoting or sudden deceleration stresses.

Stretching and a proper soccer warm up can help prevent you avoid them.

Treatments are rest, ice, compression and elevation. Formal physical therapy for rehabilitation is also needed in most cases.

Ankle

Ankle injury is in the form of varying degrees of ligament tears. The basic treatment can be ice, elevation, compressions and a splint (usually for sprain injuries.

Fractures are not uncommon and all ankle injuries with accompanied swelling should have an evaluation by a specialist. If you suspect a sprain be sure to consult a specialist directly.

Shoulder

The most common shoulder injury in soccer is a separation of your shoulders which is a form of ligament sprain.

This injury will require you to wear protective padding measures to control the pain.

But if you are really unlucky more serious severe ligament tears may require surgery.

Shoulder dislocation is another less common injury that you need to watch out for. But if you are unlucky I can only say that it really hurts!

There are two type of shoulder dislocation: a partial dislocation or a complete dislocation. A complete dislocation is something you don't even wish on your worst enemy.

The pain cannot be described with words and you will need to find a doctor or specialist who will push your shoulder back into the socket!!! My goodness, it hurts just to write about it :-)

Fracture

One of the most serious soccer injuries that you may suffer (I hope not!) is the fracture of both bones of your lower leg. This one really hurts and I hope that you will be able to avoid it.

My experience is that fracture of both bones is the number one of all injuries when talking about recovery. So, make sure to always, always, always wear shin guards no matter what!

In most cases it will occur when you and the opponent are going for the ball simultaneously.

One of you misses the ball and kicks the other with enough force to break both the tibia and fibula bones of the lower leg.

All right, this scenario may seem pretty unlikely but you still need to be careful out there. So what to do in the event of an accident?

The leg needs directly to be splinted and you must be immediately seen by an orthopedic surgeon.

A surgery will be a must for some fractures, usually those that are unstable or open fractures (one that breaks the skin).

Achilles

Achilles tendinitis means pain in the tendon just above your heel. One common symptom is that you will feel pain in your tendon when walking or running up hill or up stairs. Using some form of arch support will help you get rid of it.

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