By: Dr. Joseph Camoratto PT, DPT

Sports injuries can be a very frustrating and time consuming issue that many people including athletes, coaches and trainers have a hard time preventing. The difficulty in preventing injury is that it is hard to say what exactly will predispose an athlete to being injured. There are so many people advertising different ways to prevent injury and different tests to predict injury without being able to back up with good evidence.  What is someone who is involved with athletics to do to help reduce the risk of injury?

Look to the data of course!

A 2018 study titled Strength training as a superior, dose dependent and safe prevention of acute and overuse sports injuries: a systematic review, qualitative analysis and meta-analysis outlines 6 studies that look at one factor that seems to do a good job at preventing both acute and overuse injuries. 

That factor is STRENGTH

The article included a whopping 7738 participants ages 12-40 years old and took them through various length strength training programs averaging 21 weeks with varying exercises including but not limited to squats, bench press, hamstring curls and knee extensions. Something to note is that out of all of the 7738 participants, not a single one was injured while doing the strength training programs!

Takeaway notes from the review include:

– Strength training programs reduced sports injuries by an average of 66% and were able to more than halve the risk of sports injuries

– Strength training programs may also improve sport specific performance

– Strength training related carryover effect can improve coordination, enhance technique in training/match situation, strengthen nearby tissues reducing joint loads and increase psychological perception of high risk situations

– Strength training is safe for children and adolescents

In summary, strength training is simple, safe, can be done by anyone and has a large range of benefits not only in athletes but in anyone who wants to become more resilient, robust and tolerant to life! Strength training is one of the main interventions that we do at NeoLife Physical Therapy and Wellness located in D’Iberville, Mississippi, and we will be happy to work with athletes or anyone who is interested in reducing their risk of injury! Contact us today!