Winter Olympic Injuries and How to Prevent Them

With the 2014 Winter Olympic Games almost here, STACK Expert Mo Skelton takes a look at some common winter sports injuries and how to prevent them.

Winter Olympic Injury

With the 2014 Winter Olympic Games almost here, let's look at some common winter sports injuries. Some are specific to certain sports, while others are a result of year-round training that is hard on the body. A study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine after the 2010 games in Vancouver enumerated some of the more common winter sports injuries. Let's take a closer look.

Knee injuries

Knee injuries were the most common joint injury suffered in the 2010 games. Here are some tips to prevent one of the most common knee injuries, ACL tears.

Concussions

Head injuries occurred during high-speed events such as bobsleigh, as well as in contact sports such as hockey. Symptoms included dizziness, vomiting, memory loss, headaches, visual changes.

The key to concussion management is knowing you have had one. Check out this STACK article featuring Dr. Oz discussing concussive symptoms.

Spine injuries

Injuries to various parts of the spine were noted in several sports.

The key to dealing with a spine injury is to not ignore it. Get an appropriate diagnosis and then treatment. Back pain doesn't have to end a career, but it shouldn't be dismissed either.

Check out this video from elite strength coach Mike Boyle on how to fix back pain by moving your hips.

Muscle injuries

These include contusions (bruises), lacerations (cuts) and strains. Muscle strains— to hamstrings, quadriceps or hips—can happen to any athlete, including curlers, Nordic skiers and figure skaters.

In addition to a dynamic warm-up, eccentric training and multi-joint training are imperative for high-level athletes. Check out this STACK article for ideas on preventing muscle strain.

Illnesses

Athletes also received medical treatment for illnesses. In winter sports, this is not a shock. Females were the most commonly affected, and upper respiratory problems were the most common illness.

The study found that 10 percent of the 2,500 athletes in the 2010 Games incurred an injury that required medical care, and 7 percent of athletes experienced an illness.


Photo Credit: Getty Images // Thinkstock

Topics: CONCUSSION | COACH | STRENGTH COACH | SPORTS | INJURY | SPORTS MEDICINE | SPINE | BACK PAIN | OLYMPIC GAMES | KNEE INJURIES | MEMORY LOSS | DIZZINESS | RESPIRATORY