An overuse injury is an injury to muscle, joint, tendon, bone or cartilage that occurs because of repetitive trauma to that portion of the body. Some of the most common overuse injuries include:
There can be a number of factors that can contribute to an overuse injury. Poor diet, constant repetitive motion,overcompensation, weakness in muscles, body stature and overexercising can contribute to overuse injuries. However, there are two categories that cover most of the mistakes you are making while taking part in physical activities.
Over Training- This involves over doing it. No matter what sport or physical activity, if you take on more than your body can handle too early or too often, your body is going to let you know. Whether it is your shoulders as a swimmer or your knees and hamstrings as a runner, if you train hard, recovery is important. When training your muscles are strained and experience micro tears. These tears repair themselves and will help strengthen your muscles with proper recovery. However, without proper recovery muscles can develop larger tears that may turn into chronic strained or torn muscles. These compromised muscles can then lead to problems with tendinitis.
Improper Technique- This reason for developing overuse injuries stems from performing an activity with improper technique. Improper technique can develop because of muscle weakness or because of different body statures. Either way, the improper performing of physical activities can lead to overuse injuries by putting strain on muscles that may not have been meant to take the most amount of force.
As you age, your body becomes slowly broken down. Muscles, joints and bones that have been doing the same repetitious activity over the years eventually become broken down and lose strength. Your risk of having an overuse injury increases if you have not recovered properly over time and/or have had improper technique while doing physical activity. The older you get, recovery after physical activity is much more important than when you were younger. If you are older, remember to eat healthily and give your body time to rest after any kind of exercise.
There are many forms of overuse injury treatment that are available to people today. At Kernodle Clinic, our physical therapists can work with you to develop a treatment plan for your particular overuse injury. Treatments may include: