Common Sports Injuries: Strains and Sprains

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12 Questions

What is the most common type of sports-related injury?


What is the primary function of ligaments in the body?

To connect bones

What helps to reduce the risk of injury when landing from a jump?

Gradually extending and flexing the leg upon landing

What is a common consequence of repeated sprains?

Weaker ligaments

What can help to support and protect joints with a history of sprains during activities?


What type of tissue can help to soften the impact on the structure upon landing?


What is the primary characteristic of acute injuries?

They manifest immediately after the application of force.

What type of injury occurs when a bone is pushed out of its joint capsule?


Which of the following factors does not influence tissue resistance to forces?

Blood type

What type of force pushes toward the center, compressing the structure?

Compressive force

What is the relationship between musculoskeletal strength and collagen and elastin fibers?

Musculoskeletal strength is directly proportional to collagen and elastin fibers.

Which of the following structures is highly resistant to compressive forces?


Study Notes

Common Sports Injuries

  • Strains are the most common sports-related injury, occurring when muscles and tendons are overstretched or moved improperly.
  • Common examples of strains include pulled hamstrings, groin muscles, and strained quads.
  • Most strains are minor and heal with rest, but prevention is key through warming up and stretching before strenuous activities.


  • Sprains are injuries to ligaments, the tissues connecting bones.
  • Sprains occur when ligaments are twisted or pulled improperly.
  • Common areas affected by sprains include ankles, knees, wrists, and elbows.
  • Sprains can be more severe than strains, often requiring longer healing time and sometimes immobilization.
  • Prevention strategies include pre-workout stretches, warm-ups, and proper technique.
  • Repeated sprains can weaken ligaments, making future injuries more likely.
  • Using a brace can help support and protect joints with a history of sprains during activities.

Jumping and Landing Mechanics

  • Landing on a fully extended leg is more likely to cause injury due to the lack of shock absorption.
  • Gradually extending and flexing the leg upon landing helps absorb impact, reducing injury risk.
  • Tissue types such as fat can help soften the impact on the structure, aiding in shock absorption.

Types of Injuries

  • Acute Injuries manifest immediately after the application of force and are characterized by symptoms like pain and swelling.
  • Examples of acute injuries include sprains, strains, fractures, dislocations, and wounds.
  • Sprains are caused by overstretched ligaments.
  • Strains are tears in the muscle-tendon unit due to overstretching.
  • Fractures are breaks in bone caused by high-impact forces or bending/twisting.
  • Dislocations are bones pushed out of their joint capsule.

Chronic/Overuse Injuries

  • Chronic injuries develop over time due to prolonged exposure to forces.
  • Signs and symptoms emerge gradually and can result from repeated stress.

Correlation of Body Components and Injury Types

  • Ligament injuries lead to sprains.
  • Muscle-tendon injuries result in strains.
  • Bone-related issues cause fractures and dislocations.

Factors Influencing Tissue Resistance

  • Inherent abnormalities can affect tissue resistance.
  • Body position during impact affects vulnerability.
  • Age can influence susceptibility to damage.
  • Technique affects injury risk, with proper execution reducing risk.
  • Fitness level can improve resistance to injury.
  • Equipment can protect or increase risk, depending on proper fit.
  • Environmental aspects, such as weather, terrain, and surface, can impact injury risk.

Types of Forces

  • Tensile forces pull away from the center, stretching the structure.
  • Compressive forces push toward the center, compressing the structure.
  • Shear forces act toward different ends, twisting the structure.

Response to Forces

  • Bone is highly resistant to compressive forces.
  • Muscle-tendon units effectively resist tensile forces.
  • Combination exposure to forces increases injury risk.
  • Musculoskeletal strength is affected by the density of collagen and elastin fibers and their positioning at the time of force impact.
  • Commonly affected structures in sports and fitness include ligaments, tendons, muscles, and bones.

Test your knowledge on common sports injuries, including strains and sprains, their causes, symptoms, and prevention methods. Learn how to identify and manage these injuries to get back to your game quickly. Improve your understanding of sports medicine and stay safe on the field.

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