With the Australian Open in full swing this week we thought it would be a great opportunity to discuss tennis and foot health. Tennis requires speed, power, endurance, balance and coordination therefor strong and healthy feet are a must!
Despite the infamous ‘tennis elbow’, lower limb injuries are the most common as a result of playing tennis. They are caused by the sprinting, stopping, pivoting, jarring and the pounding nature of tennis. Injuries such as, ankle sprains, plantar fasciitis, achilles tendonitis, sesamoiditis, stress fractures and posterior tibial tendonitis can occur as a result of playing tennis. Here are some simple tips to help prevent a lower limb injury and keep you on the court for longer!
1- Footwear– Making sure you have the correct footwear is essential to playing tennis. If you are playing casually this means wearing supportive and appropriate runners. However, if you are a regular tennis player you might want to look at purchasing tennis shoes. These shoes are specially designed to give you further support and stability when moving around the court.
2- Strengthening- There are many different muscles in your foot and ankle and just like any other part of the body you can strengthen these to prevent injury. Performing simple exercises like calf raises, toe abduction and foot curls are all great strengthening movements. If you are wanting a more specific tailor made programme one of our friendly Podiatrists can help!
3- Stretching- Just as strengthening your muscles is important, stretching and having good mobility is essential. Where there is limited range of movement an injury lurks around the corner. Rolling your feet out with a tennis ball or massage ball in the evening is a simple trick to loosen your fascia and stretch out the feet!
4- Seek Help of a Professional– When you start to notice a niggle or something doesn’t feel right, seeking help from a health professional is your best option! The earlier you treat an injury the easier and faster it is to recover. Treatments such as shockwave therapy, dry needling or strapping could be your simple solution. Whether this is a Podiatrist or another allied health service, professional intervention has its place. If you are experiencing any lower limb problems as a result of a sports injury book an appointment today.