Article by Jarred Edwards
Common Basketball Injuries
Basketball injuries are generally defined as either acute/traumatic or overuse injuries. Acute or traumatic injuries occur due to a sudden force or impact, such as a fall or a stumble, resulting in direct damage to ligamentous or bony structures.
The most common injuries in basketball pertain to various types of ankle sprains, and patellofemoral pain or acute knee trauma (Drakos, M. et al, 2010). The trend clearly suggests lower limb injuries, which account for approximately 62%, occur much more regularly than injuries to the trunk or upper limb. Of these injuries, the majority are acute and occur at a rate of between 6-14 injuries/1000 hours played.
What's the Incidence of Basketball Injury?
According to a study of high school basketball players by the National Athletic Trainers' Association (NATA):
- 22% of all male basketball players sustained at least one time-loss injury each year.
- 42% of the injuries were to the ankle/foot
- 11% hip and thigh
- 9% knee
- Sprains were the most common type of injury (43%).
- General trauma was the second most common type of injury (22%).
- 60% percent of the injuries occurred during practice highlighting the need to warm up and strap for training.
- 59% of game-related injuries occurred during the second half of the game, which identifies fatigue as a predisposing factor.
Basketball Injury Prevention Strategies
The following safety precautions are recommended to help prevent help basketball injury:
- Warm up thoroughly prior to playing a game or training.
- Ensure you have excellent core control, proprioception, speed, strength, endurance, agility and plyometric skills.
- Wear supportive basketball shoes with skid-resistant soles.
- Use good technique.
- Clean of courts before play - check for slippery spots or debris.
Did you know...
There is continuing expansion in research surrounding identifiable risk factors and prevention of injuries. This has led to a number of clinical measures that physiotherapists can assess and monitor to potentially lower your risk of injury. These tests are based around testing a player’s proprioceptive or dynamic balance ability throughout the lower limb, both in static and dynamic situations.
A systematic review published in 2015 concluded that "irrespective of their ankle injury history status, there was a preventative effect of proprioceptive training on ankle sprains."
To further strengthen this position, two recent basketball-specific studies identified that just 8-weeks (3 x 20-30 minute sessions per week) of proprioceptive and neuromuscular training can significantly reduce the risk and total number of ankle injuries over the season (Taylor, J. et al, 2015). These exercise programs were also a lot more effective in those players who had had previous ankle injuries, suggesting that it is even more important to address these deficits following a resolved injury.
External ankle supports and high-top basketball shoes have also found to be effective at reducing the incidence of ankle injuries in basketball players!
How Do You Identify Your Risk of Injury?
As a result of this growing field of research, physiotherapists have been equipped with the tools and clinical tests to assess your proprioceptive ability in order to intervene with a client-specific training program, and monitor improvements over a period of time to continually assess your risk levels.
These measures include such things as:
- Basketball-specific testing,
- Lower kinematic chain testing of static and dynamic proprioception,
- Deep core and pelvic control.
These assessments are particularly important for those who have had previous ankle injuries to help reduce recurrence. If you have a current injury, or you would just like a thorough assessment to potentially reduce your risk of injury, join us in the clinic and we can provide you with guidance and a personalised strengthening and control program to assist your athletic endeavours.
If we can MEASURE it and IDENTIFY the deficits, we have a much better chance of PREVENTING injuries!
Please contact your physiotherapist for more advice regarding basketball injuries:
Common Basketball Injuries
Common Treatments for Basketball Injury
FAQs for Basketball Injury
Helpful Products for Basketball Injury
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Last updated 19-Jan-2018 01:47 PM
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