Sunday, August 29, 2010

Non-contact injuries, normal or just common?

Hamstring tears, quad strains, pulled groins, torn ACLs (non-contact that is), low back pain, shoulder impingment. These are all common injuries that we hear of all of the time. The question is, are non-contact injuries (NCIs) normal or are they just common?

First of all I think we need to distinguish the differences between what does normal mean, and what does common mean. Do they not really mean the same thing?

Normal: In Medical terms, free from injury and illness

Common: of frequent occurrence, a regular event

So back to our original question. Are non-contact injuries normal or just common? I think the above definitions will now help us to appreciate that they NCIs are NOT normal, they are just common.

So, WHY are NCIs so common in the first place. There can be many factors that contribute to NCIs. Such as the following:

- Poor Posture
- Poor nutritional habits
- Poor sleep
- Poor recovery
- Poor stress management
- Poor Strength and Conditioning levels
- A poorly designed strength and conditioning program that is only contributing to the occurrence of a NCI

Now that we have established that NCIs are abnormal, and also they contributing factors, how do we as strength coaches and therapists go about reducing their common occurrence?

The following is what I would find neccessary to help bulletproof an athlete from injury:

1. Assessment - FMS (I know its really a screen), postural assessment, injury history, lifestyle questions (stress, sleep, job, etc)

2. Design the most effective and efficent strength and conditioning program to bulletproof the athlete in question from any future injuries, while at the same time getting him/her bigger, faster, stronger

3. Re-assess!

So Remember non-contact injuries are NOT normal, they are just common. So with a proper strength and conditioning program, good nutrition, good stress management, and proper recovery, their commonility will be reduced greatly.

Stay Strong,


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