Volleyball Injuries Treatment
Played both on court and on the beach, volleyball has only recently gained a status of an internationally popular sport since its inception in the late 19th century in the United States. Today, this team sport has over 800 million people playing it on a weekly basis, with over 46 million Americans who participate in it either recreationally or professionally. It is now a staple sport in most schools, higher educational institutions, and of course, the Olympics. In terms of participation rates, it is one of the most popular sports in the world, followed only by soccer in terms of popularity. Designed as a sport which engulfed in itself the elements from other popular sports such as basketball, tennis, handball and baseball, this activity thus happens to result in common injuries acquired in the above mentioned sports.
Like in all sports, repetitive strain injuries are common among athletes, and even those who take up volleyball recreationally. Doing a motion over and over, particularly if not properly warmed up before exercise, tends to result various strains and sprains. Blocking and spiking movements are the main reason behind the majority of the injuries involved in this sport, causing shoulder, wrist and finger traumas. This is followed by injuries acquired through the digging move volleyball players use to respond to a serve and keep the ball in the air. The diagnosis is performed through an evaluation of the injury by a professional, generally after imaging of the injury is made and a physical examination of the hurt shoulder.
Volleyball is a heavily overhead motion sport, where athletes are required to perform powerful movements with their arms in order to play the sport. Injury is particularly common during the ‘spike’ movement, since it is a brisk powerful overhead motion. Here, there are a number of possibilities to what type of an injury this may be if you are experiencing shoulder pain.
Rotator cuff tendinitis is an inflammation of the tendons connecting the scapula, clavicle and humerus bones in the shoulder, caused by micro tears in the tissue. It is usually considered to be caused by wear and tear due to overuse of the tendons through overhead motions. Symptoms include weakened shoulder and rotation of the arm, with varying degree of pain felt from the shoulder through the arm.
A condition also known as the ‘jumper’s knee’ is generally responsible for knee pain, where a tear in the patella tendon attached to the kneecap happens, causing inflammation and weakened knee function. Among volleyball players, knee injuries tend to occur during the dig while in the libero position, or during a spike. There are four stages to the jumper’s knee injury, starting from pain occurring only after a training session, then progressing to pain occurring before and after training sessions. This indicates that the injury is still in the mild form, and that rest and proper warm ups with cool downs after the training will do the trick in restoring the function of the knee.
The complications of the injury are followed in the next two stages – where the athlete experiences varying amounts of pain which prevent him, or her, from playing the sport, and in the last stage of deterioration of jumper’s knee condition, the person is unable to complete their basic daily routines without experiencing pain in the injured knee. In all stages of the jumper’s knee injury described above, it is still highly advisable to get a consultation from a therapist; and depending on the extent of the trauma, either take the prescribed anti-inflammatory medication and start a rehabilitative program. In case of an extreme deterioration of the knee, surgery may have to be considered.
Wrist and thumb pain
Volleyball is an overhead sport, and most of the moves require the use of the hands and the wrist. Wrist and thumb injuries prevail among players, both professional and amateur. Thumb and wrist sprains are the most frequent complaints from volleyball players.
A volleyball thumb injury occurs during a motion where it is twisted in an unnatural position and out of its motion range, thus causing a sprain of the ligament attached to the base of the thumb.
Along with wrist fractures, the common volleyball wrist injury complaint is the carpal tunnel syndrome caused by inflammation in the flexor tendons because of a compressed median nerve going through the wrist’s carpal tunnel. The frequent symptom is the tingling pain felt in the wrist if it is pressed upon from the inside of the arm.
Here are some basic guidelines to follow before playing volleyball, in order to limit or prevent an injury from happening.
- Warm up before any training session and stretch properly
- Be aware of the players around you to avoid collisions
- Wear proper gear when playing on volleyball courts
- Beware of overtraining and give enough time for the muscles to rest properly after each training session
And as with any physically intensive sport, follow the ‘R.I.C.E.’ methodic, which is revolves around giving the body and the injured area to rest and recuperate, apply ice to the affected area, as well as compression on the injured spot, and keep the injured limb elevated. If the pain persists, or feels in a way different to a muscle fatigue or a simple strain, see a medical specialist immediately.
TREATMENT AT OUR CLINIC
At our clinic, you will be diagnosed with the condition you have and the pain it is causing for you to experiene after an injury. With some injuries, which oftentimes orthopedic surgeons highly recommend a surgical solution, we offer a unique non-invasive approach to rehabilitate the injury, which have been proven to prolong athletic careers. In combination with traditional treatment methods, such as physical and manual therapies, we have state of the art innovative technologies for treating sports injuries available in our clinic. These include computer assisted rehabilitation environment (CAREN), dynamic neuromuscular stabilization (DNS), and extracorporeal shockwave therapy (ESWT).
For professional athletes, who either suffered an injury or are looking to enhance their performance in the game, we offer a variety of non-invasive treatments, such as the virtual reality system ‘CAREN’, which helps restore human locomotion, spinal stability and aids the integration of the motor control. This system provides precise virtual reality situations in a controlled environment for the athlete to apply, while simultaneously recording the patient and getting real-time feedback.