How Can Football Injuries Be Prevented? 10 Key Tips

Christopher C. Dodson, MD October 3rd, 2018

The Experts at Rothman Orthopaedic Institute Offer Key Tips for Football Injury Prevention

Football is a sport plagued with injuries — but it doesn’t have to be. While many traumatic accidents are unavoidable, we at Rothman Orthopaedic Institute hope to assist in the reduction of preventable football injuries. On the football field, every safe player and every averted injury is a victory.

But how can football injuries be prevented? It is an important question to ask for players, parents, coaches, and doctors. While too many people simply accept injuries as a necessary evil of football, a great number of common football injuries can be prevented with caution, physical preparation, proper technique, and situational awareness.

10 Things You Can Do To Prevent Football Injuries

The unfortunate reality of football is that you are often at the mercy of your fellow players. A single improper tackle or trip by an opponent or teammate can cause anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tears, knee injuries, broken bones, or concussions. These particular injuries — as well as certain spontaneous, accidental traumatic injuries — cannot be entirely prevented.

The good news, however, for those asking how can football injuries be prevented, is that there are concrete actions that can be taken to prevent the likelihood of injuries throughout the football season. Many orthopaedic injuries, in particular, can be prevented with proper training, technique, and healthy habits. That’s why the Sports Medicine experts at Rothman Orthopaedic Institute have compiled the following list of preventative measures for reducing the risk of orthopaedic injuries and other common football injuries.

  1. Stay active during the off-season. If your muscles and ligaments are inactive, weakened, or inflexible (as tends to happen without consistent exercise), you are far more prone to orthopaedic injuries. While you don’t have to play football year-round to stay in shape, it’s important to incorporate other activities like running, swimming, or weight training.

  2. Ease into activity. If you begin the football season at full intensity before your body and muscles have adjusted to the specific strains of the sport, injury is far more likely. Gradually increase the intensity and duration of your activity.

  3. Undergo a full physical and wellness evaluation prior to the start of the season to determine readiness and identify any possible conditions of concern.

  4. Warm up prior to football activity. Cold, stiff muscles are more brittle and susceptible to injury. Warming up and cooling down are important football injury prevention exercises.

  5. Stretch prior to and following football activity to loosen muscles and enable maximum flexibility.

  6. Always wear full, proper equipment. This should include helmet, shoulder pads, hip pads, tail pads, knee pads, mouth guard, thigh guards, cup, properly fitted shoes, and athletic supporter.

  7. Always stay adequately hydrated. Dehydration causes cramps and can induce overheating and disorientation, making players more likely to be injured.

  8. Tackle properly; keep the head up and resist leading with the helmet.

  9. Never “play through the pain”. If you experience serious pain, continuing activity could worsen your condition and cause a serious injury. Halt activity and seek a medical examination as soon as possible.

  10. Stay closely observant and cognizant of your surroundings. A number of serious injuries occur as a consequence of distraction.

If you’re asking how can football injuries be prevented, we hope this list helps to provide effective answers and solutions that will allow you to have a safe football season. If you have more question or have experienced a sports injury and would like to schedule an examination by a specialist, contact Rothman Orthopaedic Institute today. To learn more, visit us here or contact us at 1-800-321-9999.

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