As the number one sport for females in Australia, netball is a fast paced game that is great for teamwork, fitness and friendship. Unfortunately, sometimes playing netball comes with the risk of injuries. The three main reasons you might be experiencing pain are:
- Underlying muscle weakness or imbalance
- Incorrect technique
Let’s discuss how these injuries can come about and what we can do to fix them.
Traumatic or ‘acute’ injuries are sometimes unpreventable, especially during collisions with other players or when your landing is disturbed.
It’s important to know what to do initially if you become injured during a game. The RICE principle is any easy way to remember the best steps to take to ease inflammation from an acute injury.
- R est
- I ce
- C ompression
- E levation
Follow the steps of RICE and book an appointment with a physiotherapist. We will be able to assess your injury, gauge the extent of damage and give you the best treatment, advice and rehabilitation program to get you back on the court as soon as possible! If you don’t rehab injuries properly (even if they seem minor), this may make you vulnerable to doing the same thing in the future. This is especially the case with ankle sprains, if rehabilitation is not completed after the first incident, instability may remain, and the athlete is much more likely sprain the same ankle again.
Underlying Muscle Weakness or Imbalance
Another common reason that you might be experiencing pain from playing netball is that some muscles are not working hard enough or are working too hard. If your muscles aren’t coordinating properly, they pull differently on your joints which can put them in non-optimal positions while you are playing. This decreased control of your joints may increase the impact on your joints and cause pain. If this is the cause of your pain, you are more likely to be experiencing symptoms whilst playing or after the game. You may find that your pain settles significantly with rest from playing and training. A physiotherapist will be able to do an assessment to determine how your muscles are working and provide exercises to strengthen or retrain as needed. Even niggly pain is worth getting fixed, you will be able to focus on the game and enjoy it so much more!
Netball is a fast paced game, played on a hard surface, with lots of abrupt stopping, starting, and changing direction. If these movements are carried out often but with non-optimal technique, this can also overload the joints, put them in high risk positions and consequently cause injuries.
Incorrect technique is commonly paired with a degree of muscle imbalance and is also a cause of more ‘niggly’ pain whilst playing or lingering after the game. Again, you may find that symptoms correlate to when you are playing or training and settle down with rest. Training your brain and muscles to land, decelerate and change direction correctly will not only strengthen muscles and improve control but greatly decrease your risk of injury. If you’re interested in making sure that your technique isn’t putting you at risk, or causing your pain, come in and see us. It’s always better to prevent!
Our resident netball expert Caitlin is an accredited Netball Australia Endorsed Provider and will be able to sort out all your Netball related problems. To book an appointment, give us a call on 4724 0768 or book online at www.physionorth.com.au.