As the Spencer Davis Group so eloquently proclaimed in 1965, it is important, for some, to keep on running. So often, if someone who engages in sporting activity, as an enthusiastic amateur or a seasoned professional, succumbs to an injury, the greatest fear is that they’ll be told to give up doing whatever it was that caused the problem. For many, this results in their putting off what they believe to be the inevitable, choosing instead to carry on with an injury, causing further problems which may indeed then lead to them giving up. This does NOT need to be the case.
Sports injuries, or existing biomechanical issues that manifest themselves as pain whilst engaging in sporting activity, if caught and treated early enough, need not lead to giving up, or even in impaired performance. There are many orthotic interventions, most very simple, that can promote pain-free activity, increase confidence and reduce the chances of further injury.
Many kinds of sports, including running and ball sports in particular, have special movement sequences and loading patterns, which increase the risk of elevated stress and strain. It is possible, with the use of a bespoke orthotic insole for example, designed for your foot, but also for your sport and footwear, to reduce the risk of damage from overloading as much as possible, by supporting natural movements and at the same time preventing incorrect strain.
Many sports require a different range of movement, and therefore the strain is felt most at the ankle or the knee. Take tennis for example, where many professionals suffer from ankle injuries caused by the sudden explosion of, often lateral, movement, Simple, yet effective ankle orthoses worn on one, or both ankles can assist with stability and increase confidence. A certain former World Number 1 from north of the Border always wears these.
Hi impact sports such as skiing, surfing, cycling or motocross may require a knee brace, to both prevent injury and assist in recovery. There are many types of knee brace, all designed for a different purpose, and in order to get the type of brace best suited to your situation, an appointment with an orthotist is recommended.
I guess that the underlying message here, is that if you have a sporting injury, or an issue that is impairing your sporting activities, then you should really get checked out by a qualified and experienced Orthotist. It’s all, as I’ve mentioned before, about biomechanics, and they really are the specialists in this area. Short-term pain relief of whatever kind, might keep you going for a while – get you through that next match, run, swim or event – but if you want to avoid the dreaded ‘you need to give up’ conversation, then sorting whatever it was that caused you an issue in the first place, has to be the best option.