Mitigating Common Sports Injuries
Common sports injuries are a fact of fastpitch softball. For the coach, the question is how to avoid them with good training techniques and proper equipment. You cannot prevent all injury in sports, but you should attempt to mitigate injury as much as possible.
Some common injuries that occur are groin pulls and pulled hamstrings. These generally occur due to a lack of proper warm-up and stretching. There is not a coach out there that does not reserve some practice and pre-game activities focused on proper team warm-up, from throwing to leg stretches, and so forth. The question is how serious do your players take this time. Read the articles linked to this paragraph to get a better appreciation for how these things happen and make a commitment to your team that you will stress the importance of a good warm up. Only then will stretching time go from your players focusing on how their friends' day is going to actually focusing on properly warming up and avoiding these injuries.
© K.M. Klemencic
The anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury
is one of the most devastating injuries any athlete can sustain. Typically associated with running sports like soccer and basketball, I have witnessed an ACL injury during a softball playoff game. It was devastating to see. What is worse, the female athlete is four to ten times more likely to sustain such an injury. Bart Anderson, MS, ATC is a certified athletic trainer, having worked at the high school, college and clinical settings. His site, Sports Injury Info
provides injury prevention ideas to a wide range of injuries. Bart has provided insight to the ACL injury
and how it might be prevented with some simple exercises that should be made part of your practice and pre-game routine.
Concussions in sports
have gotten a lot of press lately, and for good reason. Physicians still are trying to understand their full impact, as we wrestle with these common sports injuries. The ImPACT testing program
has also been thrust into the news as something that allows doctors to understand differences between pre and post-concussion impact on the brain. Sometimes, players running into each other will happen in a game. The key here is to properly train your players to understand who is the primary versus secondary fielder, particularly between outfielders and when fly balls appear to be between the outfielder and infielder.
© K.M. Klemencic
Softball safety equipment
has come a long way in preventing some common sports injuries in the fifteen plus years I have been around the game of fastpitch softball, from the addition of the safety mask on the helmet to the advent of the infielder’s mask. Clearly, each safety advancement takes some getting used to by the player, but the dividends are quickly recognizable with the reduction of foul tips to the face or infielders or pitchers being hit by a batted ball.
No matter how hard you try, sports injuries are going to occur. That is why it is important that every coach know basic CPR and first aid
to keep control of the situation until the first responders arrive when a serious sports injury occurs.
NOTE: The information provided above, as with everything on Fastpitch-Softball-coaching, is subject to the Disclaimer. This is not intended to be medical advice, and we suggest you consult with your physician prior to altering any course of action.
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