All Entries For injury

Bouncing Back after an Injury

Hi, dailySpark readers! I’m Emily from Daily Garnish, and I am excited to write my second guest blog post for the site (read my first one here). Today I'm going to share some tips with you today about bouncing back – both physically and mentally – after being sidelined by an injury.

Over the past few years, I have somewhat defined myself as a runner. From the moment I jogged my first block I was hooked on the exhilaration and sense of accomplishment that running brought to me. I started with my very first 5K, worked my way all the way up to marathons, and raced nearly every distance in between.

On a rainy day last October, I was crossing the street on my way to a haircut when I was suddenly struck at full force by a large SUV. The minute I hit the pavement and felt the burning in my legs, I knew that I had more than a few bumps and bruises. As the ambulance raced me to the hospital, my thoughts drifted to the half-marathon I was scheduled to run that very weekend, and my sixth full marathon that I had trained to run at the end of the month. I was grateful to be alive, but also knew that the damage to my left knee was going to forever change who I was as an athlete.

The next few months brought a range of emotions – from gratitude to depression, anger to sadness, and everything in between. Days that were previously spent running, biking, and lifting weights were suddenly spent laying on the couch feeling sorry for myself. Over the course of the following days, weeks, and months – I discovered that allowing myself to heal emotionally was just as important as the physical healing process.
Posted 3/8/2011  6:01:29 AM By: SparkPeople Guest Blogger : 64 comments   18,534 views
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The Benefits of Cross-Training: Now I’m a Believer

A few weeks ago, I wrote a blog about my current running injury. I’ve got Achilies tendonitis, and have been doing weeks of physical therapy which will (hopefully) get me running again. When the therapist told me I wouldn’t be running for at least 6 to 8 weeks, I panicked for a few reasons.

First, I love to run and use it as a stress reliever. So I’d have to find a new hobby, at least temporarily. Second, I didn’t know what else I was going to do for exercise. Aside from a few days of strength training each week, running has been my only form of cardio for a very long time. I became a very fit runner and was proud of the fact that I could easily go out for a 6-8 mile run any day of the week. And because I liked it so much, I never saw much of a reason to try any other activities. That is, until I became injured.
Posted 11/16/2010  5:55:39 AM By: Jen Mueller : 57 comments   16,585 views
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I'm Injured. So Now What?

I’ve blogged many times about how running is an important part of my life and something I really enjoy. For the past 6 weeks or so, it’s been anything but enjoyable. I started having pain in my Achillies after a particularly hilly run. Instead of resting like I knew I should have (and like I would tell any SparkPeople member who asked for advice), I decided to just keep pushing through the pain. After a few weeks it was obvious that the pain wasn’t going away, so I made an appointment to see an orthopedic doctor. It took three weeks to get an appointment, so silly me kept running.
Posted 10/22/2010  3:06:52 PM By: Jen Mueller : 102 comments   22,904 views
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Basketball Leads the Pack for Traumatic Brain Injury

It has been reported that more kids participate in basketball than any other youth sport, including soccer and football, making it the number one team sport in the United States. With over 1 million plus kids taking part in this sport, it would not be surprising to read that injury rates would be much higher just because of the sheer number of kids participating.

Before this study was released, if you were to ask me what team sport was most responsible for traumatic brain trauma in kids participating in youth sports, I would have probably said football, maybe even cheerleading, but surprisingly that is not the case. In a recent study published in the October issue of Pediatrics, the official journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics, released earlier this week, researchers analyzed data and discovered an alarming trend in the number of traumatic brain injuries reported in children playing basketball.

In this study, reported injuries, including traumatic brain injury, accounted for more than 4 million emergency room visits between 1997 and 2007. According to researchers while this figure was an overall drop in the number of reported basketball injuries from previous years, the same cannot be said about traumatic brain injuries. Researchers concluded that traumatic brain injuries rose 70% in the review period causing great concern amongst the medical community.

Posted 9/18/2010  9:29:28 AM By: Nancy Howard : 32 comments   14,232 views
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Running Inconveniences Part 3

This is the third in a series of blogs regarding those running inconveniences that may not sideline you as a runner, but if you fail to seek early intervention, may do just that. Today’s blog will cover one of the most common and dreaded running inconveniences—shin splints, also known as medial tibial stress syndrome.

Shin splint pain may be experienced by runners, and yes even walkers, of all skill levels. While many of us are familiar with the term, it is not a medical condition per se. Shin splint is a general term for any lower leg discomfort brought on by running and in some instances walking. The pain can be caused from inflammation of the bone, muscle, or connective tissue or a combination of all three. Although beginner runners are more prone to developing shin splint pain because their muscles and connective tissues have not had time to develop, seasoned runners are not immune from developing this condition, especially as they up their mileage or speed.

Posted 6/12/2010  10:30:28 AM By: Nancy Howard : 53 comments   17,967 views
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Running Inconveniences Part 1

In recent years running has seen a huge resurgence for those of looking to reclaim their health and meet new goals. But what happens when you are forced to forgo your running due to an inconvenience caused in your training. It can leave many runners sidelined and frustrated; however by taking a few precautions early on hopefully you can prevent these so-called minor inconveniences from turning into bigger ones down the road.


Blisters are one of the most common running inconveniences especially as a runner increases his/her mileage. They are primarily seen on the soles of the feet and the toes, but they can actually occur anywhere on the foot. And while they may be a minor inconvenience for some, for others they can literally be so painful they can keep you from running.

Posted 5/19/2010  4:45:13 PM By: Nancy Howard : 60 comments   19,498 views
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Runner's Knee: Exercise or Rest, Which is Best?

Ask any runner, or non-runner for that matter, what one of the most common running injuries is and invariably many will mention patellofemoral pain syndrome (PFPS)--AKA runner's knee. It has been reported that as many as 70% of all runners will suffer at least one injury in their running careers, but this should not be a deterrent to anyone who is contemplating taking up running. With proper education and knowledge many people can run without incidence for years.

It was once believed that the high impact of running led to a greater incidence of pre-arthritis or osteoarthritis of the knee, but research has revealed that is no longer the case. Runners are at no greater risk than the general population to develop arthritis of the knee. In fact, according to an article published in the October 2007 issue of Runners World running can actually strengthen the connective tissues--ligaments, tendons--and muscles that support the knee, as a result the risk of doing damage to the cartilage, which is the main cause of osteoarthritis, is reduced.

Posted 11/18/2009  4:51:47 PM By: Nancy Howard : 45 comments   107,311 views
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85% of Us Are Wearing the Wrong Workout Shoes--Are You Among Them?

Although I'm able to give people advice about finding the best fit for a running or workout shoe, I have to be honest. When it came to workout shoes, I always chose style over support. In the store, I'd ignore things like cushioning, stability, and fit. I'd stand back, look at the wall of shoes, and pick whichever ones I thought were prettiest. After all, I'm about to fork over $100 for these suckers. I want to like them! I want to be motivated when I wear them! Ugly shoes didn't have a place in my closet and they certainly didn't make me want to put them out and head to the gym. I was very brand loyal and I wanted a sweet looking pair of shoes to go with my cute workout clothes. I was a shoe snob.

I really should have known better. I was a runner in high school and I'm a fitness professional. I know how important shoes are when you're working out—they are your foundation, after all. But I didn't heed my own advice about getting fitted for shoes or wearing sport-specific ones either. I figured it didn't matter because I wasn't a "runner." Finally, being a slave to style caught up with me. I started experiencing debilitating knee pain on a regular basis— while I worked out, after I worked out, and even when I was sitting still. I could barely bend my knee to squat or lunge.

Talking to Coach Jen (an experienced runner) one day, she asked me what kind of shoes I was wearing. We both knew that I wore "the cute kind" and that it had been a while since I replaced them. We also agreed that I should have known better.
Posted 9/4/2009  10:27:07 AM By: Nicole Nichols : 113 comments   56,585 views
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Want To Avoid Knee Problems? Start Running!

It's something I've heard for years: "All of that running is going to kill your knees. You should find some other lower-impact exercises instead." Although it's a common perception that running will negatively affect your knee joints and likely leave you hobbling around in your later years, does research support that idea? Not necessarily.
Posted 8/28/2009  2:17:09 PM By: Jen Mueller : 120 comments   37,840 views
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Improve Your Balance in 3 Simple Steps

Hiking on a wooded trail. Riding a bike down the street. Doing crunches on a stability ball. Hitting the slopes. Walking up the stairs with ease. These are more than simple pleasures you can enjoy by living a healthy lifestyle. They're also proof that your body's ability to balance while doing a variety of things is pretty amazing. Even when you're not thinking about it, your body is balancing—in everyday life, when you exercise, and during your active pastimes.

Most people don't spend any time thinking about their balance until it's too late—when they actually fall or injure themselves. But balance isn't just a concern for the elderly who are more prone to falls (and the serious complications those falls can cause). Balance training is important for everyone, from athletes to casual exercisers.

Good balance and a strong core go hand in hand, and a strong core usually means better posture, less back pain and improved performance during exercise and athletics. Plus, the better you balance the less likely you are to fall or injure yourself. If you haven't thought much about maintaining—or enhancing—your balance, now is as good a time as any to start.

You've probably seen lots of fancy fitness gizmos that are designed to help you improve your balance—everything from a simple stability ball to balance boards, inflatable balance discs, BOSU trainers, foam rollers and more. While these items certainly add challenge to your workout, you really don't need ANY fancy equipment—not even a Wii Fit—to improve your balance. In fact, you can turn just about any standard strength-training or flexibility exercise into one that does double duty by improving your balance while you work your muscles. With multi-tasking moves like these under your belt, that means you won't have to spend more time exercising just to improve your balance. Find out how!
Posted 7/22/2009  11:15:30 AM By: Nicole Nichols : 54 comments   22,480 views
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5 Tips to Keep Kids Safe around Home Exercise Equipment

When I heard the story about Mike Tyson's 4-year-old daughter dying in a freak treadmill accident, I assumed this kind of thing was pretty rare. I was surprised to learn that thousands of young children are treated in hospitals for treadmill-related injuries each year. Although most injuries are minor, some are very serious. That got me to thinking about the safety of home workout equipment, especially in my own home where my young children could be at risk.
Posted 7/7/2009  6:00:00 AM By: Jen Mueller : 37 comments   20,462 views
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Wii Warriors Outnumber Weekend Warriors in the Doctor’s Office

Not long ago, one of Coach Nicole’s blogs generated a pretty interesting discussion about how playing Wii Fit games compared to “real” exercise.

Can lurching across your living room carpet, remote in hand, to return a vicious topspin forehand from your TV set ever compare to a real game of tennis, with racquet, ball, and real life opponent?

That’s a question we may have to leave to the philosophers and sports purists among us to decide.

In the meantime, though, it’s becoming pretty clear to doctors everywhere that Wii Fit sports can generate just as many sports injuries as the real thing, and probably even more. In fact, according to this article, “Wii Warriors” have been turning up in doctor’s offices lately in even greater numbers than the Weekend Warriors of earlier generations, and doctors are beginning to develop a special vocabulary to describe their problems. It’s not just “tendinitis” these days—it’s “Nintendinitis.”

Is this just because more people are using Wii Fit for exercise, or is there something about these “virtual” sports that makes them even more likely to cause injury?
Posted 4/28/2009  7:02:40 PM By: Dean Anderson : 97 comments   5,444 views
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5 Winter Weather Risks to Avoid

Now that winter is officially here, so are the risks of winter injuries. While I live in a climate where snow and ice are rare, many areas of the country are experiencing snow, ice, and cold temperatures like never before.

Below are a few of the most common winter weather injuries that may be avoided if proper caution is taken prior to venturing outside.
Posted 1/3/2009  6:00:04 AM By: Nancy Howard : 70 comments   7,234 views
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Fitness Defined: Open and Closed Chain Exercises

Most of you probably haven’t heard of open and closed chain exercises. But chances are, you do them all the time without even knowing it. It’s important to understand the difference between the two because one type is safer while the other can increase your risk of pain and injury. Do you know the difference?
Posted 10/3/2008  6:03:43 AM By: Nicole Nichols : 79 comments   192,156 views
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