Swimming, unlike other sports such as running or cycling, may seem like a discipline in which injuries are rare or even non-existent.
However, in reality, swimmers are exposed to some injuries. In swimming, as in all sports, there are several frequent injuries, most of them are caused by improper execution in the technique or by ignoring minor discomfort.
For swimmers, a small pain that is ignored can become a chronic injury. In most cases, optimal training decreases the possibility of suffering a muscle or soft tissue injury.
Here are some of the most common injuries that usually occur in swimmers, as well as some tips to prevent them:
1 grease pad
It is known as infrarrotulian fat pad syndrome. It is a small soft tissue structure located in the front of the knee. Commonly, it occurs during the kick phase, when the action is too strong.
Prevention: the easiest way to prevent this problem is to kick with the knees relaxed, sending the force of the kick from the hips. Specific stretches also help.
2 neck pain
These discomforts are usually related to the shoulder or even the hands. This pain is commonly caused by insufficient body sway that forces the neck to rotate too much, by unilateral breathing or by over-training.
Prevention: it is advisable to learn to breathe bilaterally (on both sides).
3 shoulder pain
Also known as ‘swimmer’s shoulder’, this common injury occurs due to a compression of the tendons of the shoulder muscles. In most cases, two muscles are involved when they are squeezed between a bone arch.
Prevention: training the serratus anterior or major serratus muscle (located in the upper lateral aspect of the thorax) or stretching the back of the shoulder helps prevent this injury.
4 Pain in the lower back
Low back pain is usually caused by repetitive stress. Poor stability or weakness of the buttock muscles also contribute to this pain.
Prevention: to avoid it, it is recommended to perform exercises that strengthen this part, such as the practice of knees to the chest.
5 Swimmer’s Ear
Also known as otitis externa, it is a chronic infection of the ear canal. It presents as a pain in the ear. When the ear canals are filled with water, fungi and batteries can be installed in that place.
Prevention: the easiest way to prevent it is to use earplugs.