Sports injury is an umbrella term that covers a large variety of conditions, usually musculoskeletal in nature. It can include fractures, dislocations, ligament and tendon sprains, muscle strains, inflammation and various types of pain. Although these injuries can all occur in other aspects of life, sports injury rehabilitation has a particular focus on returning the client to playing their chosen sport with the best possible recovery in the shortest possible time.
Whatever the level of sport you play, from elite athlete to recreational fun, you deserve the best treatment for your injury. Our experienced therapists will perform a thorough assessment which will cover the site of injury and the surrounding structures. From this a personalised treatment plan can be developed to address your injury recovery and gradually progress towards a return to playing sports. The treatment you receive in the acute stage of your injury is very important. Early diagnosis and treatment will minimise the risk of further damage and shorten the overall recovery time. The exact treatments used will vary depending on the type of injury, its severity and what symptoms are present, but may include;
- Heat treatments, including ice, to alleviate pain and reduce swelling.
- Soft tissue massage to relieve stiffness and disperse swelling.
- Ultrasound to promote soft tissue healing.
- Mobilisation exercises to relieve joint stiffness and maintain range of motion.
- Muscle stretch exercises to maintain and improve flexibility.
- Muscle strengthening exercises to improve joint stability.
- Advice on activity modification to avoid re-injury during recovery.
- Functional retraining specific to the sport you play.
- Personalised Exercise Rehabilitation programme for gradual return to daily activity and sports participation.
- Advice on future injury prevention.
One of the treatments commonly used for treating sports injuries is biomechanical analysis, including gait analysis, core stability and muscle imbalance assessments. This process will look at the efficiency of your movements and identify any mechanical impairment or poor technique that may be contributing to your injury. This allows our therapists to not only treat you injury but address the root cause, improving your sporting performance and reducing the risk of re-injury.
Injury prevention is always preferable to injury rehabilitation. Our therapists have detailed anatomy and physiology knowledge, along with a clinical understanding of progressive fitness training and the importance of psychological influences on athletes. There are a number of simple preventative steps that can be taken to minimise the risk of injury. If you are planning on initiating new and intensive training, our therapists can help advise you on targeted training techniques and injury prevention. Some useful general advice would include;
- Stretches, performed daily, tightness is a good indicator of injury risk.
- Warm up thoroughly before exercise to lower risk of sprains and strains.
- Warm down after exercise to flush the build-up of lactic acid from muscles to prevent aching muscles the following day.
- Proper hydration will prevent cramping and improve performance.
- Use properly fitted footwear to avoid friction, joint instability and insufficient impact absorption.
- Wear the appropriate protective equipment for your sport [helmet, gloves etc.]
- Conditioning exercise programs can improve sporting performance by targeting muscle groups more intensely than just playing the sport alone, particularly core strength.
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I didn't actually choose to see Nick - I was sent to him by my exasperated personal trainer, and now I can't thank her enough! Five weeks before the London Marathon I developed a pain in one of my glutes and did what any self-respecting idiot would do - ran on it until it was so bad it hurt just to walk, and the months of training seemed like they'd been for nothing.
Nick is wonderful. He's very professional and thorough and he has a naturally calming manner that will put you at ease. He also clearly knows his stuff - in our first session he quickly identified my problem (piriformis) explained it in terms I could understand (!) and gave me exercises to speed up recovery.
I had three more sessions and they were well worth it. As well as treating the injury he also assessed my running style for any underlying issues and correctly identified previous injury sites. With his help I was able to quickly get back into training and, by some miracle, a week before the marathon I was pain free.
I joked that, as well as fixing my injury, I expected Nick to make me run faster. Well, maybe... Just maybe... The man's a magician! I'm delighted to say I ran a pb, clocked my first sub-3 hour marathon and came 46th out of all the ladies. Thank you Nick! I cannot recommend him enough.- Ros P
A big thank you to Elaine (osteopath) at Nick Castle Osteopathy & Sports Medicine Clinics - after just 2 sessions she managed to work out some major aches and pains I'd been having daily, for over 6 months. I plan on seeing her on a regular basis to prevent any future problems. Thanks again!- Priti S
I have had 2 sports massages with Nick, one in Kensington and one in Amersham. Nick is a very approachable therapist, who spends time building a picture of the type of sports you do and the injuries you have. I have found Nick's techniques to really help improve my performance.- Jane B