The Inevitable Injuries Swimmers Regularly Experience

Icing for injuries

The Inevitable Injuries Swimmers Regularly Experience

By Evangelia Vasilakis, Swimming World College Intern. 

All athletes know the pain of the different injuries they acquire while participating in their sport. Swimmers can go down a long list of different injuries they have acquired during competitions and practice. Here are a few of the typical injuries that are experienced by swimmers. 

1. Shoulders

What is thought to be the most common is the shoulder injuries. Some of these injuries are strains, tendonitis and rotator cuff problems. All these injuries can be from overuse, a problem with technique or weakness in the shoulder muscles. Swimmers often complain of shoulder pain because each stroke utilizes the muscles in the shoulders in different ways. 

2. Back 

Many swimmers also endure injuries in their backs. This can be the extended use of the lower back. Swimmers constantly strain it because of other rigorous movements we make during our swims. A lack of core strength can be a major contributor to these injuries. A way to address these issues is to focus on core workouts to make sure your core is taking some of the stress off your back. 

3. Knees 

Most common with breaststrokers are knee injuries. The movement made in the kick of breaststroke can put stress on the ligaments around the knee. Most of the time, improved technique can help alleviate strain placed on the knees. But other knee injuries can be found from the constant hitting of the wall during flip turns, or the pressure of pushing off the wall or diving off the blocks. 

4. Cuts and bruises 

These never seem to be talked about. Swimming is considered a non-contact sport but swimmers are constantly hitting things while swimming. Swimmers hit each other’s hands while practicing or they kick each other. Swimmers also constantly hit the lane line, giving themselves accidental abrasions or bruises. Many pools also still use tiles on their walls. These can chip or break off, leaving sharp edges that swimmers inevitably hit, causing minor abrasions. All these injuries can happen at any time.

In conclusion, swimmers are no strangers to injuries. Swimming is a full-body sport so it is inevitable to never experience one of these physical ailments. Swimmers see it all. It is interesting to hear about all the different injuries your teammates have dealt with during their careers because they are all so wildly different. Many of these can be fixed easily with technique changes or physical therapy, while some can be fixed with a little ice or a bandaid.

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