Strength training reduces sports injury rates

Strength training is integral to any well thought out program for an athlete be they a runner, cyclist, footballer or rugby player. The reason for it’s inclusion is usually performance related, as in looking for it to aid improved performance through the ability to generate more force etc. There are other benefits to getting stronger and in this paper from the BJSM website it’s role as an intervention in sports injuries was examined. Continue reading “Strength training reduces sports injury rates”

Improving hip mobility

The role of hip mobility comes up regularly in the clinic but how much movement you need depends on what your goals are. If you want to be a gymnast the the  quantity and quality of movement needs to be high but if you have less lofty goals of maintaining good hip health for running then we still want quality movement but the amount we need is significantly less.  Having said this regardless of our goal maintaining a normal range of movement in the hip can help reduce the chances of creating problems in our backs, knees and ankles. Continue reading “Improving hip mobility”

Hamstring tears

Injury to soft tissues/muscles account for something like 10-30% of all injuries in sport and hamstring tears are the most common of these. The hamstring acts as both a knee flexor and a hip extensor as well as contributing, to a lesser extent, to external rotation of both the hip and knee. Most common injury to the hamstrings, approximately 70% of all injuries, occur to the biceps femoris, the lateral of the 3 hamstrings, and usually during high speed running where the muscle is required to lengthen and contract at the same time to slow down the leg. The tear is normally in the long head of biceps femoris around the tendinous junction where the muscle is at it weakest. Continue reading “Hamstring tears”

Is spinal alignment or other structural issues the cause of back pain?

Back pain is often spoken about in structural and biomechanical manner where you can get the impression that you may have to give up doing what you love to do be it golf, crossfit, rugby or gardening because you have issue X. The big issue with this is that it on the one hand over simplifies the problem and catastrophises it all in one go so that you are left thinking that your wonky leg is the cause of all your pain and trying to run on it is a recipe for disaster. Continue reading “Is spinal alignment or other structural issues the cause of back pain?”

What does having a leg length difference mean to your back pain?

The idea of having a leg length discrepancy and how it might relate to back pain or other issues is something that comes up in the clinic all the time. Having a difference in leg lengths is quite common though for the most part these will only be noticeable when lying on the couch rather than when standing as they aren’t congenital, that is to say there isn’t a difference in the length of the bones. The apparent difference comes from tension in the soft tissues of the thigh and hip which pull on the femur and/or pelvis giving the appearance of a difference in length between the two legs. Continue reading “What does having a leg length difference mean to your back pain?”