MLB Spring Training and Foot & Ankle Injuries

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Major League Baseball’s spring training has officially begun, and fans are anxious to see how their favorite team will stack up against the competition. However, even with baseball’s reputation for being a safe sport, many injuries occur in spring training and throughout the regular season that hamper a team’s success.

Treating & Preventing Common Baseball Injuries

You don’t have to be in the major leagues to prevent foot & ankle problems. If you’re playing or coaching for school, fun, or anything in between – these tips are for you too!

Listed below are some of the common foot and ankle injuries experienced by baseball players, as well as preventative tips and treatment options.

Ankle Sprains, Fractures, and Achilles Tendon Injuries

Ankle sprains, fractures, and achilles tendon injuries often occur when players slide feet first into a base, misstep when tracking down a ball on the field, or make a play on a ball that forces them into contact with the fence.

These injuries can be prevented and limited by:

  • Keeping proper form
  • Wearing braces
  • Custom orthotics
  • Proper stretching and warm-up
  • Breakaway bases to prevent jamming of the feet, ankles, and legs when sliding
  • Wider warning tracks leading up to fences for better player positioning awareness

Some of the treatment options for these injuries are:

  • Bracing
  • RICE therapy (rest, ice, compression, elevation)
  • Physical therapy
  • Casting the injury
  • Surgical intervention (this can be important for preventing re-injury)

Overuse Injuries

These injures often occur due to the excessive training and repetitive movements of players in practice and games. The longer a player has played, the more common these issues become. Some of the most typical overuse injuries are plantar fasciitis, achilles tendonitis, and calcaneal apophysitis.

These injuries can often be prevented or limited by:

  • Utilizing proper form
  • Stretching
  • Proper footwear
  • Rest & intermitted breaks in training

Some of the treatment options for these injuries are:

  • Injections
  • Orthotics
  • RICE therapy (rest, ice, compression, elevation)
  • Surgery (only in some cases)

Contusions

Contusions are caused by direct and high impact collisions. In baseball these are usually caused by contact with the bat, baseball, or impact between players. This type of contact may result in severe bruising, or even fractures; it’s important to be evaluated by a physician in order to receive proper treatment.

These injuries can often be prevented or limited by:

Some of the treatment options for these injuries are:

  • RICE therapy (rest, ice, compression, elevation)
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (ibuprofen, etc.)
  • Pain relief medication (depending on the severity)

Foot Pain & Dermatological Conditions

Foot pain and dermatological issues are common for baseball players and most athletes. Most of these issues stem from wearing ill-fitting cleats / footwear. A few of the problems players may face are: neuromas, sesamoids, bunions and hammertoes.

These injuries can often be prevented or limited by:

  • Proper fitting footwear
  • Stretching
  • Checking your feet daily for any abnormalities

Some of the treatment options for these injuries are:

  • Surgery
  • Rest
  • Topical & / or oral treatment
  • Replacing previous footwear with new proper fitting footwear
  • Orthotics & insoles

Whether you’re an athlete or not, the podiatrists at Advanced Foot & Ankle are here for you! We know how critical timely treatment is when it comes to injuries – especially for sports. That’s why we offer same-day appointments for those with urgent needs. We also offer pre-season screenings for athletes in order to promote injury prevention.

If you’re facing any foot or ankle issues, sport related or not, please visit us at one of our 4 conveniently located Middle Tennessee locations or schedule your appointment Today!

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