According to the National Sporting Goods Association, more Americans play basketball than any other team sport. Maybe that’s because basketball can be an incredibly exciting, fast-paced game. However, whether you play professionally, in a league, in a pick-up game or just for fun, your risk of injury is high. In 2010, 528,584 basketball injuries were reported.
The reason injuries are common is, basketball can be physically demanding. The sport requires a high intensity of running, jumping, twisting, cutting and direct contact with other players. Think about it. Every move you make on the court starts with your feet and ankles. That’s a tremendous amount of stress on the bones, muscles and tendons of your feet and ankles. Because of these intense demands on your body, your risk of overuse or traumatic injuries is high.
Overuse injuries occur due to repeated stress on certain areas of the body. Eventually the area becomes damaged, and you experience pain. Some common overuse injuries include:
- Achilles tendinitis – The Achilles tendon connects your calf muscle to the heel bone in your foot. You use it when pushing off from your feet as you run and jump. When you overuse it, it becomes inflamed and painful. Occasionally, the Achilles tendon can tear. Treatment may include rest, ice, over-the-counter pain relievers (ibuprofen), custom foot orthotics (like the ezWalker® Performance Insole), immobilization and/or surgery.
- Patellar tendinitis – The patellar tendon connects your kneecap to your shin bone. You can stress the tendon with repetitive jumping, causing tiny tears in the tendon. When the tears become too numerous to heal, the tendon becomes inflamed and your knee may swell. You’ll experience pain in the tendon just below your kneecap. Treatment may include rest, ice, anti-inflammatory medications and use of support straps or braces.
- Plantar fasciitis – The plantar fascia is a band of tissue that runs from your heel bone across the bottom of your foot to your toes, connecting to the metatarsal joints. If you strain your plantar fascia, it gets weak, swollen and irritated. You’ll feel pain in your heel or the bottom of your foot when you stand or walk. This pain can be mild or sharp and stabbing. The pain is typically worse in the morning when you take your first steps after getting out of bed. Treatment may include rest, ice, anti-inflammatory medications, custom foot orthotics (like the ezWalker® Performance Insole), and/or night splints.
Traumatic injuries occur when you experience a sudden, forceful injury, like a muscle pull or tear. Some common traumatic injuries include:
- Ankle sprains – This type of injury often occurs when another player lands on your foot or your ankle rolls inward or outward too far, causing the ligaments in the ankle to become overstretched and torn. You’ll experience sudden pain, swelling, bruising, tenderness and loss of proper ankle movement. Treatment may include rest, ice, elevation of the ankle, immobilization with a brace or tape, and/or surgery.
- Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tear – The ACL connects your upper and lower leg bones and helps to hold your knee in place. Your ACL may suddenly tear when you abruptly change direction, suddenly stop, make a quick cutting move, land awkwardly, or experience a direct blow to your knee. You may hear a loud pop when the ACL is injured. Your knee may slip out of its joint. You will also have severe swelling and pain. Treatment may include ice, use of a protective brace, use of a crutch, rehabilitation exercises and/or surgery.
If you experience any injury playing basketball, it’s important to have your injury diagnosed and treated by your doctor.
Provide a Proper Foundation for Your Feet
Custom orthotics, like ezWalker® Performance Insoles, provide your feet with the support they need to help you maintain your balance and stability. These insoles are biomechanically designed to help support the medial, lateral and trans-metatarsal arches of your feet. ezWalker® custom insoles will guide your feet into better alignment; reduce the stress and strain on your feet, ankles and knees; and improve your overall posture.
The ezWalker® is ultra thin and ¾ length, so it is extremely versatile. Plus, it comes with a 90-day, money-back guarantee. So, guard your feet against foot pain and injury while playing basketball. Order your ezWalker® Performance Insoles today!
Because … when your feet feel good, you feel good.
Note: If you follow these guidelines and your pain or injuries persist, you may have a more serious condition. See your physician for a more complete diagnosis and treatment.