Swimming is one of the few low impact activities that offer a full-body workout. This is why a lot of people consider swimming over other exercise regimens. But like all other sports, swimmers can also injure themselves during practice or even in the middle of the competition. While professionals know what to do when this occurs while they are in the middle of a pool, novice swimmers might be clueless. This is why podiatric physician Selin Sakarcan believes that swimmers should know common sports injuries and how to avoid them. Here are some examples of common swimming injuries.
This injury occurs mostly on freestyle swimmers and can develop because of a bad form. Since swimming techniques mainly involve arm and shoulder muscles, repeating the same incorrect motion will put more stress on specific muscles that can cause injuries like rotator cuff impingement, rotator cuff tears, bicep tendonitis, and bursitis. The best way to avoid swimmer’s shoulders and other injuries related to it is to make sure techniques are performed correctly. When treating swimmer’s shoulders, Selin Sakarcan claims that one should eliminate kick boarding exercises and refrain from suddenly increasing the workout’s intensity. And lastly, do not exercise your fatigued muscles.
Besides the arms, swimming also places a tremendous strain on the neck because of all the necessary movements for breathing, especially when swimming in freestyle. Proper form is also necessary to avoid this injury. When breathing while swimming, twist your entire body to position yourself to breathe and not just rely on your neck for the positioning. It also helps to do neck strengthening exercises to avoid this kind of injury.
Breaststroke swimmer’s knee
Among the few swimming strokes, only the breaststroke requires your knees to help propel you further in the water. This type of injury is more common in competitive circuits rather than recreational environments. According to Selin Sakarcan, one should switch up swimming styles during training to help avoid this injury. The injured knee should be iced at least twice a day to treat it.
This injury might not be muscle-related, but it can limit the performance of an athlete. Swimmer’s ear can manifest through itching, clogged ear canals, sensitive outer ear, and muffled hearing. It is easy to develop this when swimming in potentially dirty bodies of water. According to Selin Sakarcan, untreated swimmer’s ear can lead to an ear infection that can permanently damage one’s ears and end a swimmer’s career.