Monday December 2, 2013
A recent case study from the Annals of Emergency Medicine examines the different types of injuries and dangers involved in the Tough Mudder obstacle course races. If you haven't seen one, the Tough Mudder is a 10 to 12 mile running race that is peppered with military style obstacles. Obstacles range in difficulty from climbing over 6 foot walls to running over mud and water through a maze of electircal wires.
I participated in a Tough Mudder about a year and a half ago, and quite a few of my friends warned that I would likely finish the course with a broken ankle. That didn't happen, but I did get a nasty cut on my finger.
This particular case series focuses on 5 cases of participants who suffered various injuries on the Tough Mudder course. The injuries included burns and cardiac distress from electrical obstables, right sided weakness (later diagnosed as Todd's paralyisis and possible stroke), and a head injury after losing consciousness and falling in the dirt.
There have also been reports of different sprains, fractures, and other orthopedic injuries as a result from participating in Tough Mudder contests. People with these orthopedic conditions may benefit from phyiscal therapy to help get back to normal activity and function.
If you are planning on participating in a Tough Mudder, perhaps a visit to your physical therapist may be in oorder to help you devise an appropriate training strategy.
Read my account of the Tough Mudder
Saturday November 30, 2013
Whenever I treat patients who have had an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) sprain, I am often asked how the injury could have been prevented in the first place. Are there ways to prevent an ACL tear or injury?
There are many factors that lead to an ACL tear. Sometimes collisions with other athletes while playing sports may cause excessive stress to the ACL and cause a tear. But what about non-contact ACL tears? Often we hear about ACL injuries that were the result of improper foot and knee position during high velocity or high impact sports.
There are many studies that examine the factors that are involved in preventing non-contact ACL tears. From these, there appear some simple things you can do to avoid the dreaded ACL tear. Here are a few ideas:
- Maintain strong quads, hamstrings, and hips.
- Maintain appropriate calf and hamstring flexibility.
- Work on jumping and landing properly during plyometric drills.
If you have suffered an ACL tear, a visit to your physical therapist can help to improve your knee ROM and strength and get you back on the sports field. A part of your ACL treatment should focus on ways to minimize the likelihood or re-injury to your ACL.
Friday November 29, 2013
The snow is flying in the northeast United States, and that means ski and snowboard season is revving up. If you have ever read my blog, you may know that I enjoy skiing with my family.
I just got back from a day of skiing, and I am starting to feel my quads qet a little sore. They feel a little tender when I am walking up and down the stairs and when I am trying to sit down and rise from a chair.
I'm not too worried though. Delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) is a common problem after exercise. It simply means that you exercised a muscle or group of muscles that hasn't been worked in a while. I guess I should have done my ski and snowbaord prep exercises a little more diligently.
If you have developed DOMS, do not worry. Simply wait a couple days, and the soreness will go away. A little gnetle stretching to the affected muscles also helps a bit.
Tuesday November 26, 2013
Do you want stronger wrists? Of course you do! Strong wrists are helpful in preventing injuries in overhead athletes who play baseball, volleyball, tennis, or golf. Plus, strong wrists may help prevent repetitive strain injuries like carpal tunnel syndrome.
If you have a dumbbell or a small weight, you can start wrist strengthening right away. Just use this simple step-by-step guide to wrist strengthening
to get started. Make sure you check in with your physical therapist before starting an exercise program, just to make sure you are doing things properly.