While back injuries are not the most common sports injuries, they do happen. Back injuries are often quite serious and require extensive recovery periods so it is important to avoid them if at all possible. There are particular sports in which they are much more likely to happen. These sports are ones where there is compression of the discs or twisting of the spine which can cause slippage of the discs.
We spoke with the Sydney spinal experts at Living Chiropractic about the sports in which back injuries are most common in the best ways to prevent them. If you participate in any of the following be sure to hear the advice of any certified chiropractors as they are experts on spinal health.
Back injuries are common in diving. This is because, if I dive is performed incorrectly the diver can hit the water at an awkward angle and compress the discs in their back. Most professional divers have the correct training and know how to hit the water. It is usually people who are new to the sport or people who have no idea what they’re doing we get injured.
The risk of back injury from diving is even greater from heights. As a general rule the higher the dive the higher the potential for a slipped or compressed disc if the water is his at an awkward angle.
Something that results in a loss of back injuries and sometimes even death is a sport known as cliff jumping. Usually this is done by thrill seekers jumping into deep waters in remote locations. The risk with this is that there is usually no medical help nearby should somebody get injured. There is also the risk of hitting objects floating in the water. If you participate in cliff jumping ensure you warm up your back by stretching and swim through the water to scan for any debris before jumping in.
Basketball in a similar way to diving can result in compressed discs in the spine. This can cause tremendous pain. Back injuries are most common in basketball when people jump and land hard on their heels was sent a shock wave up their spine. This causes a jarring and immediate pain which will often leave them unable to walk.
Depending on the severity of the injury a compressed disc can take months or even years to heal. Under certain circumstances the injured party may never be able to perform at the same standard as they did for the injury took place.
When a golfer takes a swing they twist their spine. This can often result in a slipped disc. This type of back injury can happen in any sport which requires twisting, and often happens at the most unexpected times.
Slipped discs are common in golf for several reasons. Number one, a lot of golfers do not bother to warm up. Goals may not seem like a strenuous sport, however when somebody swings their club the action is swift and powerful and is easily enough to cause back problems. Number two, the general demographic of people by golf is usually older and often unfit people with weaker backs were more prone to injury.
How to Prevent these types of Back Injuries
The most important step to preventing a slipped disc or a compressed spine is to warm up properly. If your body is warm you are far less likely to get injured. Ensure you stretch correctly and do some light physical exertion to get your blood flowing before making any more strenuous movements.
It is also important that you use the proper equipment and play in the correct environment for your particular sport. As mentioned above, cliff jumping and unregulated, unsupervised environment can be dangerous. Much more so than diving off the diving board in a supervised training pool.
Similarly it is important to wear the correct shoes with proper support when playing basketball. The extra cushioning in the souls of these shoes can help prevent compressed disc injuries. If you are a golf player the correct shoes will not have much effects on the swing is more important that you get the correct training and know how to hit the ball correctly. This will help you prevent slippage of your discs. That said, warming up is still the most important factor to help prevent back injuries.