top 10 most common sports injuries in legs and feet

Part 1 of our two-part blog series, we discussed five of the most common sports injuries in the legs and feet. Today, we conclude this blog series with five other common sports injuries in the lower extremities.

Shin Splints

Shin splints are a very common injury for athletes and non-athletes engaging in physical activities like jogging or dancing.  The pain in the shins might be caused by irritated and swollen muscles due to overuse, stress fractures in the lower leg bone or overpronation of the feet. Running with the wrong shoes or a bad stride may increase your probability of developing shin splints.

Signs & Symptoms of Shin Splints
  • Pain or tenderness in inner lower legs
  • Swelling in lower leg
Treatment of Shin Splints
  • Reduce physical activity
  • Ice the shin for 20-30 minutes per day every 3 to 4 hours for 2 to 3 days
  • Wear arch support inserts for shoes
  • Wear a neoprene sleeve on the leg for support
  • Get physical therapy

Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of the plantar fascia, the tissue in the bottom of the foot extending from feet to toe. Inflammation of the fascia may be the result of an increase in the intensity of activity.  However, many people develop Plantar Fasciitis for no known reason.

Signs & Symptoms of Plantar Fasciitis
  • Pain while walking, running or climbing
  • Pain in the heel
Treatment of Plantar Fasciitis
  • Reduce physical activity
  • Wear foot orthotics for support
  • Stretch the toes and calves throughout the day
  • Ice the heel

Muscle Pull

Muscle pull, also known as muscle strain, is the result of a small tear in your muscle, often caused by overstretching.  The most commonly pulled muscles are the hamstrings, quadriceps, calves and groin.  Sprint runners are more susceptible to pulling a muscle due to the fast contraction of their stride.

Signs & Symptoms of a Pulled Muscle
  • Sore or tender feeling in area
  • Swelling or bruising in area
  • Pain while using muscle or joint
Treatment for Muscle Pulls
  • Rest and avoid physical activity
  • Ice the area to reduce swelling and pain
  • Strengthen muscles after pain has subsided with resistance training

Muscle Cramps

Muscle cramps, also known as muscle spasms, are painful and usually come without warning. Almost everyone has experienced cramps at least once. The pain is a result of the involuntary contraction of one or more muscles. Muscle cramps are caused by dehydration, muscle fatigue, mineral deficiency and overuse, among other reasons.

Signs & Symptoms of Muscle Cramps
  • Pain or tenderness in area
Treatment for Muscle Cramps
  • Drink water and electrolyte drinks
  • Eat potassium-rich foods, such as bananas, white beans, spinach, yogurt, mushrooms and avocados
  • Lightly stretch the muscle
  • Ice the area to reduce inflammation
  • Compress or massage the area

Blisters

Blisters are fluid-filled vesicles on the skin caused by the repetitive friction between the skin and another material.  Blisters in the foot are usually the result of new shoes or old socks.

Signs & Symptoms of Blisters
  • Small bubbles of skin filled with fluid
  • Pain or itchiness in area
Treatment for Blisters
  • Leave blister alone and uncovered; do NOT pop blisters
  • If blister must be covered, place a bandage loosely on blister
  • Avoid any activity that may cause friction against blister
  • Use antibiotic ointments

Get Treatment for Sports Injuries in the Lower Body

If you believe to be suffering from one of the mentioned conditions take the necessary precautions to recover and prevent a more serious injury; visit South Florida Foot & Ankle Centers for any foot and ankle injuries or other disorders. If at any time you need advice, clarification or any additional information about the mentioned injuries or other foot and ankle conditions, we want to hear from you.  Please call us at 561-674-0747 or click here to schedule an appointment.