Squash is a highly competitive and fast moving sport that requires participants to be in good physical condition and have good fitness levels. Despite Squash being quite a demanding sport, injuries and health issues resulting from the sport are not particularly common. However, when they do occur, Squash injuries can be comparatively quite serious and may require fast treatment with long recoveries.
If you are taking up Squash it is advisable to be aware of the common pitfalls and make sure you take the necessary preventative measures and precautions to avoid serious or long term health issues.
Common Squash Injuries
Below are some of the most commonly occuring Squash injuries. Broadly, these can be categorised as muscle & tendon or joint injuries.
Muscle / Tendon Injuries – with Squash these mainly take the form of sprains and strains to the lower back, legs and arms. Repetitive strain issues, such as Tennis (or Squash!) Elbow or Patella tendinopathy (affecting the knee) are well known sporting issues. Impact activity is a major culprit for sprains, which can especially affect weak or overused areas; these often affect the shoulders and ankles from rapid direction changes or bumping into the walls or floors.
Joint Injuries – continuous impact and fast direction-changing movements do take their toll. This can lead to your joints suffering quite a bit, especially for people who are overweight or have poor balance. Over time Squash can also give rise to more insidious issues, such as arthritis, often affecting the knees.
Some key injury risk factors include:
- Poor fitness level – this is true for almost all sports, buy Squash in particular. Don’t expect to jump into the deep end of Squash without repercussions. Squash requires a good level of fitness and stamina, especially for more competitive matches, which can last a considerable amount of time.
- Poor technique – uncoordinated movements or movements with inadequate support and strength can lead to injury or repetitive strain quite quickly. Even holding a racquet incorrectly can put unnecessary and damaging pressure on the wrist.
- Previous injury – this is especially true for knee or ankle injuries. Don’t take up or practice Squash until these are fully healed.
- Frequent players – people who play often or for too long have an increased risk of injury or health issue.
- Age – people over 40, especially men, have a greater likelihood of acquiring an injury from Squash.
Precautions To Avoid Squash Injury
Given the above risk factors and types of injury, what can be done to prevent Squash injuries?
- Build up to your desired level of activity; don’t push yourself too hard too quickly.
- Warm up before playing; this can prepare your body for the physical demands of the game.
- Use the right equipment; the right weight of racquet, well fitted shoes and clothing that breathes are all essential to playing Squash without risks.
- Improve your technique; consider consulting a professional coach or biomechanist to make sure the way you move and train is appropriate for Squash.
- Have a check up with your Doctor or a Sports Consultant; make sure you are healthy and without latent injury before taking up competitive Squash.
Treating Squash Injuries
Bruises, strains, sprains and breaks are all often treated with immobilisation or rest, ice, compression and elevation in varying degrees. Making sure you leave a good length of time for the area to fully heal. However, it is important that you consult a Doctor or other specialist to assess the severity of the issue. Poorly diagnosed and poorly treated injuries often don’t heal properly and in some cases can become chronic.
Seeking An Opinion
If you are unsure about how to plan and train for your game there are professionals who can help you.
At my practice, I work closely with an expert team of medical and complementary healthcare practitioners, who I trust to care and make a difference for my patients, including:
- Gait Specialists
If you have any further questions or would like to book in, please do get in touch:
Telephone. 07540 123 227
Address. 27 Harley Street, London, W1G 9QP