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Top 5 Tennis Injuries

Sprained Ankle


Tennis Injuries

What is a Sprained Ankle?

Sprained ankles are relatively common in tennis players. Roger Federer, Andy Roddick and Andrew Murray have all suffered sprained ankles. The sudden sideways movements that are required during tennis can cause the ankle to twist, particularly if the surface is slippery or the player is fatigued.

A twisted ankle causes damage to ligaments and other soft tissues around the ankle. This is called a Sprained Ankle. The damage causes bleeding within the tissues, which produces a swollen ankle that can be extremely painful.

What can you do to prevent Sprained Ankles?

Applying an ankle brace to the ankle can help to reduce the risk of ankle sprains and it's a strategy that is employed by tennis pros such as Andrew Murray and Roger Federer.

Previous research has shown the injury incidence in people with taped ankles was 4.9 ankle sprains per 1000 participant matches, compared with 2.6 ankle sprains per 1000 participant matches in students wearing ankle braces. This compared with 32.8 ankle sprains per 1000 participant matches in subjects that had no taping or bracing.

What should you do if you suffer a Sprained Ankle?

In the first few days following an ankle sprain it is important to follow the PRICE protocol - protection, rest, ice, compression and elevation (never apply ice directly to the skin). An Ankle Cryo/Cuff is the most effective method of providing ice therapy and is the professional's choice. A Cryo/Cuff is ideal for home use as it is the safest and most effective method of ice therapy. It can provide continuous ice cold water and compression for 6 hours and significantly reduce ankle pain and swelling. Alternatively if you have to apply ice at home, the use of an Ice Bag is recommended. This is a safe method of ice application to avoid the risk of an ice burn.

Rehabilitation with a chartered physiotherapist significantly improves the level of ankle function. Wobble board training in the later rehab stage is designed to assist the re-education of the proprioceptive system. Previous research has suggested that patients with ankle instability who underwent wobble board training experienced significantly fewer recurrent sprains during a follow-up period than those who did not follow the training programme.


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