Pre-Season – Preventing injuries

If you’ve read our last blog, you might ask – what is the difference between post-season and pre-season? During the post-season, you’ve actively rehabilitated your injuries and allowed your body to heal. Whereas pre-season is about building yourself to become resilient to the stressors that you inflict in the name of competitiveness or social sporting endeavours.

Various types of training have been shown to decrease injury rates in both individual and team sports. Strength training for endurance based athletes was shown to improve movement economy and muscular power (Beattie 2014). It could be argued that improved movement and strength would see a reduction in tendonitis, muscle strains and ligament injuries because the muscles are able to take higher loads more comfortably.

Arnason et al. (2008) implemented a training protocol in elite football players that was aimed at reducing the rate of hamstring strains. Two groups of teams were given two separate training programs, one focused around flexibility and the other eccentric loading (providing resistance to the muscle while allowing it to stretch) specifically Nordic hamstring lowers. The group using the Nordics were found to have a reduction in hamstring tears compared to the flexibility and control groups (Arnason et al 2008).

There are many training techniques that can be used to reduce your risk of injury, no matter what level of athlete you are. And while you may suffer injuries from time to time, doing the right training will firstly reduce your risk of considerable damage, and secondly allow you to recover and build quicker. It is important that you seek professional help when developing a program to best target your areas of concern.

 

References:

Beattie, K., Kenny, I.C., Lyons, M. et al. The Effect of Strength Training on Performance in Endurance athletes. Sports Med (2014) 44: 845. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40279-014-0157-y

Mjølsnes, R., Arnason, A., østhagen, T., Raastad, T. and Bahr, R. (2004), A 10-week randomized trial comparing eccentric vs. concentric hamstring strength training in well-trained soccer players. Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sport

Arnason, A., Andersen, T. E., Holme, I., Engebretsen, L. and Bahr, R. (2008), Prevention of hamstring strains in elite soccer: an intervention study. Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports, 18: 40–48. doi:10.1111/j.1600-0838.2006.00634