High Risk Of Injury: In orthopedic consultations, the question of fitness for sports comes up again and again. Especially in patients who have problems with certain sports or who have injured themselves while playing sports.
Which sports are associated with a high risk of injury?
For children and adolescents, too, regular exercise in addition to what is offered at school poses a challenge for the growing musculoskeletal system, not only because of the associated risk of injury.
In general, of course, the dangers of high-risk sports such as martial arts, football, rugby, hockey, horseback riding or climbing are known due to the frequency of injuries. But handball and basketball are also among the top ten most dangerous sports. Just like gymnastics for women, which is at the forefront with a 20 percent injury rate.
The body must have the right conditions for the sport
Basically, I recommend having an orthopedic or sports medical examination for all sports that are practiced several times a week and at weekends .
For example, a man who weighs over 90 kg should exercises restraint in running, just like a man who is 2 meters tall. The former because of the weight acting on the knees and ankles, and the latter because of the high kinetic energy from the large levers acting on the leg joints, which can lead to microlesions of the articular cartilage. Targeted training with optimal muscle tension is required here, in which the impact forces are reduced.
It’s no coincidence that we keep seeing Haile Gebrselassie in the winning ranks in professional running – he was 1.64 m and weighed around 54 kg. With this constitution, if there are no particular illnesses, one is certainly fundamentally suitable for running.
From an orthopedic point of view, correct training with the appropriate build-up of muscles and condition are elementary requirements for any sport that is practiced on a regular basis.
Age also plays a big role. For example, children are only allowed to ride for a limited amount of time – because of the risk of damage to their spine. Corresponding precautionary measures also apply to children’s gymnastics on parallel bars and high bar.
People over the age of 60 will not be advised to take part in sports that require a high level of cardiovascular stress or are associated with a high risk of injury.
With increasing age, sports that involve gentle stretching of the tendons, ligaments and muscles are more advisable. This includes yoga or tai chi, any form of swimming, and general gymnastics.
We know from dancing that – if practiced regularly – brain diseases with dementia can be prevented.
Which sports are associated with the lowest risk?
Basically, every woman and every man is an individual case with special requirements that make him suitable for this or that sport. This can be determined as part of a general physical examination. An experienced doctor will recognize the constitution and usually make a useful assessment without taking x-rays.
The shape of the foot, the axis of the leg, mobility of the hips and the position of the spine are easy to examine and provide an important first indication.
Swimming is one of the healthy sports that can be recommended for almost all patients without restriction, and cycling with slight restrictions because of the risk of injury associated with it.
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