How to Prevent Football Injuries

Back to school is just around the corner… which means football season is about ready to kick off! Football is great fun, but with it also comes risk of injury. Luckily there are several measures an athlete can take to help prevent injuries while playing football.

  • Proper Training – Learn correct ways to tackle, fall, catch and run. Knowing proper football techniques protects you and other players during impact.
  • Strength Training – Keeping your muscles strong not only helps you perform better on the field, but can also prevent injury to your ligaments. Weak muscles tend to allow joints to move out of their natural position, which is why strength training is so important for injury prevention.
  • Stretching – Increase your range of motion by stretching before and after workouts. Make sure to warm up before each football game – not only will this prepare your body to function on the field, but you’ll get mentally focused as well.
  • Wear Football Braces – Wearing protective gear for football can be a key factor in avoiding injury. They prevent your muscles and joints from moving the wrong way. For example, most of our football knee braces come with technology that reduces the time your knee is at an “at risk” position for a ligament tear.

Follow these suggestions and make sure to stay safe this season!

Selecting an ACL Knee Brace

Holly B. is an active professional in her late twenties who spends her free time playing recreational flag football and league basketball. She recently tore her ACL and will be sharing her experiences with us as she works towards getting back into sports.

It’s only a couple days until my ACL surgery. I’m a little apprehensive because I’ve never had surgery before, but mostly the whole situation hasn’t hit me yet.

At this point I’m focusing my energy on picking out a few ACL knee braces, so that I’ll have the support I need when I return to sports. I’m selecting from DonJoy hinged knee braces.

Here are the ACL knee braces that I’m considering:

DonJoy Female Fource ACL – Not only is this knee brace made for the ACL, but it’s also made for the ladies! This brace is designed for a female body, and I think I can get a “custom-made” feel from it. It’s also only 18 ounces so it won’t weigh me down.

DonJoy Armor with FourcePoint Hinge – This knee brace is known for its ACL support during sports and other high impact activities. I’m pretty sure it’s the best knee brace I can get without a prescription, so I’d be getting the best possible protection for my ACL.

DonJoy Playmaker Knee Brace – This brace is known for being the best basketball knee brace. It’s appealing to me since that’s the sport I want to return to playing the most. It’s also more of a sleeve-style, which might help me feel like I have support all around my knee.

These are the ACL braces that I think will work for me. There are many options out there and what you decide for yourself might be different from my choices. The great thing is I don’t think I can go wrong regardless of which brace I pick. I’m excited to get my knee brace soon, but I’ll need to face my surgery first!

What is the difference between Tennis Elbow and Golfer’s Elbow?

The primary difference between tennis elbow and golfer’s elbow is where it’s located in your body. We recently came across another great article by Dr. Kevin McIntyre of Burlington Sports Therapy that explains the distinction between these two common elbow injuries. Here’s an excerpt:

What is the difference between tennis elbow and golfers elbow?  This is a common question we encounter in our clinic and the answer is quite simple.  It actually has nothing to do with either of those sports really; it is more based on anatomical location.  Golfers can have tennis elbow and tennis players can have golfers elbow.  The primary difference is that one affects the outside of your elbow and the other affects the inside of your elbow.

Check out the full article and learn more about tennis elbow and golfer’s elbow and what you can do to prevent these common elbow injuries.

Shoulder Braces for Rotator Cuff Injuries

Rotator cuff injuries can be very painful and prevent you from performing everyday activities. A few days ago we posted about how to prevent rotator cuff injuries, which recommended wearing shoulder braces. Shoulder braces provide compression to help prevent tears and offer stabilization for existing injuries. Here are some of our top shoulder braces for rotator cuff injuries:

  • DonJoy Sully Shoulder Support – Wear this brace during sports and activities for compressive support. Includes an anchor strap to keep the brace in place and to help prevent your shoulder from moving beyond its natural range of motion.
  • DonJoy Shoulder Stabilizer – Designed to immobilize your shoulder after an injury or post surgery. Reduces your chance of re-injury by managing shoulder motion. You can control the range of motion and work your way back to full activity.
  • DonJoy UltraSling III Shoulder Brace – Allows your arm to be positioned in a variety of positions depending on what you need for recovery. It includes an easy-open front panel to encourage forearm exercises. (Also available is the UltraSling III AB, which provides a large, comfortable pillow to rest your arm on.)

Rotator cuff tears can cause extreme pain and loss of motion in the arm. Wearing shoulder braces for rotator cuff injuries can make all the difference in shoulder injury prevention and recovery, so check these out today!

Aircast Accessories for Walking Braces

Because our feet carry the weight of our entire body, foot injuries can be a major hindrance to daily activities. Just getting around from room to room can be a painful experience without added support, which is why many doctors recommend patients wear a medical walking boot after foot injuries or surgery.

If you ever find yourself wearing a walking brace, keep in mind that there are many accessories to help make the healing process easier. Here are three of our favorite accessories for walking boots that we sell on BetterBraces.com:

Aircast Sock Liner – A soft and comfortable replacement liner to keep your foot warm and comfortable when wearing your Aircast walking brace. Helps reduce skin irritation and rashes.

ProCare Evenup Shoe Balancer – If you ever put on your walking brace to find that your other leg is now shorter, look no further! The ProCare Evenup Shoe Balancer is designed to help equalize your limb length. It’s easy to put on and reduces strain on your body.

Aircast Heel Wedge – Designed to be inserted into Aircast walking boots to provide additional Achilles tendon support. You can adjust the number of heel wedges used to the amount of support you desire.