Sports-Related Back Injuries

Injuries to the spine are common while participating in various sports. These injuries can occur in any part of the spine, and are the major cause of sports-related back injuries. Other causes of these injuries include trauma to the soft tissue and fascia which are an essential component of the back structure. Injuries to the lower back or neck comprise up to 20% of all sports injuries. The various types of sports-related back injuries include:

  • Upper back injury: These injuries are usually caused by a rib fracture or intercostal muscle strains, in sports like swimming, golf, tennis, skiing, and weight training with rotation, all of which involve the torso. It is rare for these injuries to be associated with spinal injury, owing to the relative immobility and extra support to the thoracic spine.
  • Lower back injury: Being subjected to a large amount of strain in various sports, the lower back is relatively more prone to sports-related injuries. These injuries usually occur in sports like running, golf, weightlifting, etc., which involve repetitive impact, twisting motions, or end of range-of-motion weight loading.
  • Neck injury: Neck injury is commonly witnessed in contact sports like football, in which the cervical spine is subjected to a great amount of stress, increasing the chances of neck injury.

Completing a warm-up before all types of sports can help to decrease the chances of back injuries. These warm-ups should be specific to the sport being played and should include increased circulation through easy movements; stretching exercises focusing on the lower and upper back, as well as the hamstrings and quadriceps; and slow initiation of the sports movements.

If you are suffering from a sports-related back injury, you can seek help from various sports-related experts at OrthoTexas. It is advisable to choose a sports medicine specialist with experience in your particular sport. Someone with this kind of expertise can help you to learn the correct form for a new sport or help to develop a proper technique for your current sport, which can help to decrease the chances of a future back injury.

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