These injuries are the most common injuries encountered in fitness and sporting activities.
When exercising unconditioned muscles a soreness a for 1-2 days after a workout can be normal. Stiffness or soreness in these muscles can even persist for a week or more. Rest, ice, stretching, and extended warm-ups will aid in the repair of these sore areas. The better trained you are the more likely soreness will not present itself.
A contusion is a region of injured tissue or skin in which blood capillaries have been ruptured. Normal muscle function and range of motion will be impacted as the blood coagulates and scar tissue forms in the impacted area. Treatment can consist of rest, ice, and a light muscle massage. Always consult the medical advice and treatment of a physician in the event of a serious injury.
A fracture is a serious injury and involves a chip or break in the bone. A ‘stress fracture’, while also serious, is not a true fracture. The cause is usually excessive strain on the load-bearing bone. If not treated, stress fractures can become actual fractures of bones in the weakened area. Depending on the impacted bone, the treatment of a true fracture usually involves immobilization of the impacted area with a cast.
A sprain is a damaged ligament. Ligaments attach bones to adjacent bones. Damage to ligaments can occur from an accident, or overuse. Sprains can range from over-stretching and micro-tears in the ligament to complete tears in the ligament. Minor sprains are often treated with ice and extended rest, where as severe sprains require immediate medical attention and could result in surgical repair procedures.
Tendons attach muscle to bones. Tendonitis is an inflammation, swelling, and irritation of a tendon. Treatment of tendonitis involves resting the involved tendon and decreasing inflammation. Mild tendonitis or muscle strains can be treated with rest, ice, and anti-inflammatory drugs to reduce swelling. In some cases, your doctor or physical therapist may prescribe an exercise routine that strengthens the supporting muscle groups to take the strain of the injured tendon. These routines often include an exercise that isolates the supporting muscle using low weight and high repetitions.