We are once again coming up to the winter sports season, which means the time to start preventing injuries is now!
Usually across a season we will see the older players towards the start of the season, most of whom have not participated in any pre season training protocol. This often means going from no training for the past ~6 months straight into 1-2 nights of training + games every week, at a high intensity. This is great for physiotherapists, as many players only realise they are not 20 anymore after an injury!
Towards the end of the season, we tend to see younger players come in for overuse injuries or acute issues – for example Achilles tendonitis or an ankle sprain. These issues are not always preventable; however proper warm-up protocols provide the best defence against these niggles.
The FIFA 11+ warmup protocol was developed for soccer players aged 14 and over to help minimise groin and ankle injuries. According to studies it reduces said injuries by up to 30-50%, which is substantial. It takes 20 minutes, and should be done a minimum of 2x a week (if not prior to every training session).
If you or your child are competing this season, it is well worth checking out. While we enjoy helping people overcome injuries, prevention is better than cure!
Chris Mooney, Physiotherapist