Did you know lacrosse and lacrosse injuries can be traced back to Native American Indians around the 1630s? Although, it was a bit different back then. Their version of the game was called “stickball” and has evolved more than 400 years later, becoming the lacrosse we know today.
Long story short, they played their version of lacrosse to settle disputes with other tribes to spill less bloodshed. Although, broken bones and death weren’t entirely out of the ordinary.
While it’s safe to say today, lacrosse isn’t anywhere near as lethal as four hundred years ago, injury is still much alive and common for everyone who plays the sport competitively and for fun.
In this blog post, we’ll be sharing with you 7 practical tips you can act on as soon as you finish reading! Read on.
Are sports injuries inevitable?
We know, you came here for answers to AVOID getting injured. But the truth is, getting injured is a part of the game. It’s as natural as the sun and moon.
Sports are fun, exhilarating, and competitive, which is why we play them. There’s an invisible rule that all players of every sport consciously or unconsciously follow, and that rule is to get hurt.
Injury in sports is inevitable, kind of how all humans and all living things grow older with time. All sports carry an injury risk because of their physical toll on your body through physical contact, collisions, and extreme exertion, regardless of its intensity.
Although injury is a force not to be reckoned with, you can prevent the severity of your injuries! How? Read on.
The 5 most common lacrosse injuries
Before we tell you how to reduce the severity of potential injuries, it’s best to know the most common injuries in lacrosse and how you can help prevent them.
1. Ankle and Knee Sprains (ACL, MCL)
According to Christopher Dodson, a Sports Medicine surgeon, these injuries represent 21% of all reported lacrosse injuries for girls and 16% for boys.
Head injuries and minor concussions result from collisions with other players or a nasty fall to the ground.
3. Hand and Wrist Fractures
These lacrosse injuries are common for both boys and girls from direct contact and stick checks. Girls have slightly higher fracture rates, mostly due to low padding. Gloves aren’t mandatory and, if worn, are only padded lightly.
4. Lower Back Pain
This lacrosse injury is often caused by repetitive strain due to running and rotation of the lumbar spine during game time.
5. Shin splints and foot blisters
These sneaky injuries are caused by relentless running and changes in field surfaces.
How do you avoid these injuries?
It all begins with reinforcing rules on the field, but here’s what you can do to protect yourself and prevent these injuries from happening during game time.
7 Lacrosse injury prevention tips
1. Respect the game. Know and follow the rules
Whether you play girls or boys lacrosse, both require skill and discipline to have fun and come out on top. This requires you to know the rules of lacrosse.
Coaches, officials, and players with integrity must follow rules that promote free play and limited contact to prevent lacrosse injuries. You can’t control how others think and act, but you can control this for yourself.
2. Communicate your sport and fitness goals and concerns
Be open and honest with your parents, coach, trainer, and doctor to ensure the right programs for your overall health and well-being are considered and met.
3. Wear the appropriate equipment to protect yourself
Your protective equipment should fit you well. Girls should consider wearing helmets and gloves to help reduce the risk of head and facial trauma as well as hand and wrist trauma.
4. Fuel your body with healthy fruits and vegetables
The food you eat fuels you with energy and strength. Consider eating more fruits and veggies like:
When you eat well, you feel good. A healthy diet allows you to compete at maximum performance and helps keep your body and mind strong.
5. Stretch before games
One of the oldest yet most important tricks in the book, stretching! Don’t forget to stretch before and after your games. Being proactive in preseason conditioning is essential for all athletes.
You need to warm up, stretch properly and drink water, especially during the hot summer. As an athlete, you shouldn’t forget to get plenty of rest after practice and games to allow your body to recover.
6. Rest your body and mind, take a break
By far, the most important thing to do is to rest and take it easy. Don’t overtrain or push yourself too hard, too fast. This does more harm than good. As a lacrosse player, you should rest at least one or two days a week and take one or two months a year away from lacrosse to stay charged and defend against burnout and overuse injuries.
7. Report all injuries
No matter how small an injury may seem, report it! Don’t play through pain. We’re believers of no pain, no gain. However, there’s such a thing as overdoing it. It’s unhealthy and can harm your mental well-being and body. Reporting minor injuries will naturally help prevent major injuries from happening.
That covers it. Now you know some of the most common injuries that can occur while playing lacrosse and how you can help prevent them. Again, truth be told, injury is inevitable and a natural part of the sport of games, but you can still prevent intense injuries from happening if you’re careful and aware.
Do you want to get in touch with us?
If you’d like personal 1:1 care or want to learn more, please contact us at (410) 946-1672, or click here. We’ll get you in touch with one of our dedicated professionals. At True Sports Physical Therapy, your health is always front of mind! It’s our mission to help you get off the sidelines and back on your feet in the fastest and safest way possible.