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Treating Summer Sports Injuries

With summer well under way, outdoor sports are in full swing. From Little League tournaments to pick-up games of basketball, kids and adults alike are getting active outside. With any sports activity, there is a risk for injury.

Common Summer Injuries

Injuries caused by repetitive motions over time

Elbow and Shoulder: Common areas of injury among swimmers and baseball and softball players. Be sure to properly warm up with shoulder stretches and adhere to pitch count or rest period recommendations for these sports.

Golfer’s Elbow: Inflammation and pain in the tendons found on the inside of the elbow. The key to prevention is to properly warm up, avoid overuse and stop activity if you feel pain.

Tennis Elbow: Caused by injury to the tendons on the outside of the elbow. Help prevent this injury by properly warming up, avoiding overuse and incorporating rest time in your schedule.

Muscle Strains

A strain is caused by a quick pull, twist or microtear of the muscle or tendon, especially when muscles are not stretched or properly warmed up.

Muscle Sprains

Unlike a strain (which many use interchangeably), this injury affects the ligaments and occurs when the ligament stretches beyond its capacity.


When players suffer a blow to the head, it is important to check for signs of a concussion: confusion, difficulty thinking clearly, memory loss, sluggishness, headache or blurry vision and nausea or vomiting. Players with symptoms after a blow to the head should not return to play the day the injury occurred and should seek medical attention immediately.

Treating Injuries

If your injury is accompanied by any of the following, it’s important to seek immediate medical attention:

  • Severe swelling, pain or numbness.

  • Inability to bear weight on or utilize a limb.

  • A dull pain that increases and is accompanied by increased swelling or joint instability.

  • Obvious fracture or dislocation.

  • Concussion symptoms, as listed above.

If you are not experiencing the above symptoms, you may first try treating the injury at home to see if your presenting symptoms decrease. Our athletic trainers recommend the R.I.C.E. method during the first 48 hours of an injury:

Rest – Rest and/or stop using the injured body part and avoid painful activity.

Ice – Place a covered ice pack on the injured area for 15 minutes at a time, every 1-2 hours.

Compression – Use an ACE™ elastic wrap or compressive device to wrap the injured area to help decrease swelling.

Elevation – Elevate the injured body part above the heart. Use a pillow to prop up an injured limb.

If symptoms don’t subside after R.I.C.E. within 48 hours, it’s important to seek medical attention.

Play It Safe

With any physical activity, it's important to remember to take a few minutes to stretch before you start. Also, if you are going to use modalities such as heat and ice, remember to heat before activity to loosen muscles, and ice after to control soreness and swelling. Most importantly, listen to your body. If you start to feel pain, stop and take a rest.

Recover From Sports Injuries with Harbourview Therapy

From high school athletes to professionals, Harbourview Therapy is skilled in treating a wide range of sports injuries across all levels of competition. Our athletic trainers are experts in not only diagnosing and treating injuries, but also in preventing future sports injuries. Don’t miss a game, meet or match — schedule your free 30-minute sports consultation with our team today.


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