Generally, ping pong is considered to be one of the few sports with a low risk of suffering injuries when playing. This is because the sport is a non-contact sport and is mostly played in a controlled environment (indoors). However, despite the sport being generally safe to play, it is also possible to develop injuries when playing ping pong. Here are the top 10 common injuries that you must avoid when playing ping pong:
The main cause of muscle strain injuries in ping pong is due to lack of proper exercising and warm up before you start playing. Before you commence any playing session, it is important that you get your muscles warm and relaxed. This ensures that the muscles do not stiffen and start to hurt while you are still playing. It is advisable to warm up and exercise your muscles at least 15-20 minutes before you start playing ping pong.
Elbow injuries suffered when playing ping pong come about as a result of overuse of hand, arm, and forearm muscles. These injuries cause pain on the outer part of the elbow/ the lateral epicondyle. If there is pain experienced on the inner part of the elbow, this elbow injury is referred to as golfer’s elbow. It is worth noting that elbow injuries can be quite severe and as such, can take very long before healing fully. If the pain on the elbow becomes too much to bear, you can consider consulting your physiotherapist. The best remedy for mild elbow injuries suffered when playing ping pong is performing strengthening and flexibility exercises.
Sprained ankle is yet another common ping pong injury. Most players of this sport have encountered and dealt with a sprained ankle injury at one point or the other in their lives. Unlike other ping pong injuries like elbow injuries, a sprained ankle can be an acute injury. As such, it is not advisable to treat the injury by yourself but you should seek professional treatment from a qualified doctor or physiotherapist.
It is possible to prevent a sprained ankle injury. For starters, you should choose appropriate footwear with a good grip and is relatively low. Avoid wearing footwear with high heel elevation as such a shoe is not comfortable to use when playing ping pong especially when making swift movements. It is recommended that you only use footwear that is specially designed for ping pong. This is because these shoes are able to handle the swift and quick lateral movements made when playing ping pong.
Shoulders are the most mobile joints when playing ping pong. Due to this, they are exposed to a tremendous motion range thus making them prone to injuries. In ping pong, shoulder joints are repeatedly used for rapid and mostly unpredictable movements. Shoulder pain in ping pong requires medical attention as opposed to self-treatment. This is because these injuries can become quite severe with time and pose a serious health risk to the player particularly because the pain is usually very acute and too much to bear. When playing ping pong, always ensure that your shoulder alignment is perfect and that you do not strain your muscles excessively.
Wrist injuries in ping pong are mostly common with beginners and people who are relatively new to playing ping pong. These injuries come about due to intentional (high-impact) swinging of the wrist causing a snapping effect. This type of swinging not only damages the swing but also injures the wrist. When making a stroke, you should let the stroke flow smoothly without forcing it or pressuring the wrist to avoid injuries.
Most injuries in ping pong are as a result of overuse. This is whereby the player extensively uses the muscles and other parts of the body while playing ping pong without resting or allowing the muscles to relax. Overuse injuries cause tearing to the muscles and can at times also cause acute pain. Overuse injury prevention boils down to ensuring that you properly warm up and ensuring that your baby is well hydrated at all times.
This is yet another common injury that ping pong players, as well as other tennis players, experience when playing. Straining on calf muscles is caused by excessively using the calf muscles with very little time to rest. Additionally, ping pong players who remain in a standing position for too long also experience strains on their calf muscles. Proper warm up and physical exercises can help in preventing the likelihood of suffering these strains.
Lower back injuries
The lower back is also susceptible to injuries when playing ping pong. Mostly, these injuries are caused by poor playing techniques, uncomfortable footwear, and an inappropriate standing position. It is advisable to use the services of a trainer or coach to teach you on the best standing position as well as the best technique to use; one that does not overpressure your lower back.
Knee joint injuries
Like other joints in the body, knee joints are also extensively used when playing ping pong. It is common to see most ping pong players having straps on their knees. When playing the sport, you must be careful so that you do not pressure the knees too much especially when leaning to one side. Knee joint injuries are mostly not severe as they easily heal on their own when the excessive pressure on the knees is removed.
Racket injuries are exclusive to doubles as opposed to singles ping pong games. These injuries occur when one player accidentally hits his/her partner with a racket while playing. It is important to communicate with your partner while playing so that neither of the players gets into the path of the other player. You can also get injured when you run into the other player in a head-on collision.
Before playing ping pong, ensure that you the tables are set well and firmly in a way that they cannot fall on the players and inflict injuries. In addition to this, players should not sit or lean on ping pong tables to avoid destabilizing the tables. Always ensure that you hold your racket firmly in the hand so that it does not slip off and hit other players when you are swinging to strike the ball.