Understanding your Back Pain

Let Burton Physio Group help with your Back Pain

Dealing with back pain can be an overwhelming experience, with its impact felt in every aspect of daily life. It’s important to understand that back pain is not uniform; it varies in duration and intensity, and is classified as either acute or chronic. There’s also a particular type known as sciatica, which has its own unique symptoms and causes.

This blog post aims to provide you with a clear understanding of the different types of back pain, helping you identify what you may be experiencing. Armed with this knowledge, you can make informed decisions about managing your pain effectively.

Burton Physio Group will guide you through the specifics of acute and chronic back pain, and explain sciatica in detail, with links to comprehensive leaflets for further information on each condition. Understanding your back pain is the first step towards managing it and improving your quality of life.

Acute Back Pain

Acute back pain is characterised by a sudden onset of discomfort in the back, typically stemming from a specific incident or injury. This type of pain is sharp and can be quite intense, serving as a signal from your body that something is amiss.

What Causes Acute Back Pain?

The causes of acute back pain are varied, but it often arises from muscle strains, ligament sprains, or other soft tissue injuries. These can result from a range of activities or events, such as lifting heavy objects incorrectly, abrupt movements, falls, or accidents.

Symptoms and Sensations

The sensations associated with acute back pain can include a stabbing or shooting pain, a deep muscle ache, or a limited range of motion in the back. You may also experience muscle spasms, pain that radiates to the buttocks or thigh, but usually not below the knee, and increased pain with movements or activities.

Duration

Acute back pain is typically short-term, lasting anywhere from a few days to a few weeks. It usually resolves on its own with self-care and there is no residual loss of function. The body’s natural healing process tends to take over, but being mindful of activities and posture can aid in a quicker recovery.

When to See a Medical Professional

It’s important to seek medical attention if your back pain is severe and not improving with rest, if you have numbness or tingling, or if you experience weakness in your limbs. Additionally, if the pain is a result of a serious injury, or if it’s accompanied by other symptoms like fever, you should consult a professional.

For a more detailed exploration of acute back pain, its causes, symptoms, and management strategies, click HERE for our Burton Physio Group comprehensive leaflet on acute back pain.

Chronic Back Pain

Chronic back pain persists for a prolonged period, typically defined as lasting for more than three months. Unlike acute back pain, which is often related to a specific incident, chronic back pain can develop over time and is sometimes less directly associated with a single event.

What Causes Chronic Back Pain?

Chronic back pain can stem from a variety of factors. It may begin as acute pain but persist due to a failure to heal properly. In other instances, it could be linked to degenerative conditions such as arthritis, disc disease, or ongoing stress to the back muscles due to posture or occupational activities.

Symptoms and Sensations

The symptoms of chronic back pain can range from a continuous, dull ache to persistent, sharp pain. The discomfort may be intermittent or constant and could potentially disrupt sleep and daily activities. Chronic back pain may also lead to a reduction in flexibility and strength, affecting one’s ability to perform routine tasks.

Differences from Acute Back Pain

The distinction between chronic and acute back pain lies not only in the duration but also in the nature of the pain. Chronic back pain may not always have a clear cause and can be more challenging to treat. It is often accompanied by psychological factors such as depression or anxiety, which can exacerbate the pain experience.

Risk Factors

Several risk factors increase the likelihood of developing chronic back pain, including aging, lack of regular exercise, prior injury, poor posture, and underlying medical conditions. Stress and smoking are also contributing factors that can affect back health.

For a deeper insight into chronic back pain, including potential treatment options and coping strategies, check out our detailed leaflet on chronic back pain by clicking HERE.

Sciatica

Sciatica is a term that describes pain radiating along the path of the sciatic nerve, which branches from your lower back through your hips and buttocks and down each leg. Typically, sciatica affects only one side of your body and can arise when the sciatic nerve is irritated or compressed.

Underlying Causes of Sciatica

The most common cause of sciatica is a herniated disk, bone spur on the spine, or narrowing of the spine (spinal stenosis) that compresses part of the nerve. This compression causes inflammation, pain, and often some numbness in the affected leg.

Symptoms of Sciatica

Pain that originates in the spine and radiates down the back of the leg is the hallmark of sciatica. You might feel discomfort almost anywhere along the nerve pathway, but it’s especially likely to follow a path from your low back to your buttock and the back of your thigh and calf. The pain can vary widely, from a mild ache to a sharp, burning sensation or excruciating discomfort. Sometimes it can feel like a jolt or electric shock and can be worsened by prolonged sitting or sudden movements.

Distinguishing Sciatica from Other Back Pain

Sciatica is distinct from other types of back pain in that the pain originates in the spine but then extends down the back of the leg. Another characteristic feature of sciatica is that the pain is usually unilateral, affecting one leg.

Risk Factors

Risk factors for sciatica include age-related changes in the spine, such as herniated disks and bone spurs, obesity, occupation that requires you to twist your back, carry heavy loads, or drive a motor vehicle for long periods, prolonged sitting, and diabetes.

To understand more about the causes of sciatica, its symptoms, and how it is diagnosed and treated, you can check out our two leaflets by clicking on the links Low Back Pain and Sciatica and Sciatica: Causes and Treatments.

Seeking Treatment

When back pain disrupts your daily life, seeking professional advice is essential. The type of specialist you choose – whether a physiotherapist, osteopath, chiropractor, or another medical professional – will depend on the nature and severity of your pain, as well as your personal preference and the treatment philosophies that align with your own beliefs about health and wellbeing.

When to See a Specialist

You should consider scheduling an appointment if your back pain is severe and not improving with self-care, if it persists for more than a few weeks, or if it prevents you from engaging in normal activities. Additionally, if your back pain is accompanied by other symptoms like fever, weight loss, or significant leg weakness, it’s crucial to seek professional help immediately.

Importance of an Accurate Diagnosis

An accurate diagnosis is the foundation of effective treatment. It can help in identifying the underlying cause of the pain and ruling out more serious conditions. A healthcare professional will perform a physical exam and may request imaging tests, like an MRI or CT scan, to get a detailed view of the internal structures of your back.

Self-Care Strategies

While waiting for your appointment, there are self-care strategies you can employ to help manage your pain. These may include applying heat or cold to the affected area, engaging in light activities that don’t strain your back, and over-the-counter pain relief if necessary. Avoid activities that worsen your pain, and focus on gentle movements that keep you mobile without increasing discomfort.

Conclusion

In this post we’ve examined the distinct characteristics of acute, chronic, and sciatica-related back pain. Understanding these differences is important, as it informs the approach to managing and treating your condition. Acute back pain is typically a transient condition, whereas chronic back pain often requires a more comprehensive management plan. Sciatica is unique due to its specific pain pathway and may necessitate targeted treatments.

By being informed about the symptoms and risk factors for each type of back pain, you can make educated choices about your care. Seeking a proper diagnosis and professional medical advice should be your priorities if you experience persistent or severe symptoms.

If you’re struggling with back pain and looking for personalised care and expert advice, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at Burton Physio Group. Our team of skilled professionals is dedicated to providing you with tailored treatment plans that cater to your unique needs. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and take the first step towards a pain-free life. Do you have Back Pain? Let us help you – Book Your Consultation Now by clicking HERE.

Disclaimer: This article is intended for educational purposes only and should not be taken as professional medical advice. The information provided herein is based on general medical knowledge and does not account for individual circumstances. It is crucial to consult with a qualified healthcare provider for diagnosis and treatment options tailored to your specific health condition.

Best wishes

Burton Physio Group

Neil Sullivan MSc, BSc (Hons), MCSP, MSST.

Physiotherapy, Physio, Back Pain, Sciatica, Manual Therapy, MBST, Disc pain, Slipped Disc, Prolapsed disc, Acute back pain, Chronic Back Pain, Lower back pain,

RUN: Better, Faster, Longer, Stronger

RUN: Better, Faster, Longer, Stronger

Burton Physio Group are bringing you our latest Blog post about how to stay injury as a recreational runner, RUN: Better, Faster, Longer, Stronger. Do you ever dream of being that runner where every step of every mile is 100% pain free? No aches, no twinges or niggles, no lingering soreness from yesterday’s session. Well, you’re not alone; research shows that as many as 79% of all runners get injured at least once during the year. Have a think about that number for a moment; nearly 8 out of every 10 runners you see at your next race or event have been or will be injured at some point that year. If you need are suffering with an injury, then take a look at how we can help here https://burtonphysiogroup.com/what-we-treat/

Think of running pains in terms of a spectrum. At one end you have the most severe, full-blown injuries, we’ll name that the red zone. This will include stress fractures that require down time to rest. The other end of the spectrum, where you’re in top form, is the green zone. Mild, transient aches that bug you one day and disappear the next sit closer to the green end. Unfortunately though, many runners will get stuck in the middle of the spectrum. Not-quite-injured but not-quite-healthy either. This is the yellow zone. Your ability to stay in the green zone depends largely on how you react to that first stab of pain. Often a little rest now, or reduction in training mileage and intensity, with some treatment, can prevent a lot of time off later down the line. Developing a proactive long-term injury-prevention strategy, such as strength training, stretching, regular massage and foam-rolling can really help to keep you in the ‘green.’ Physiotherapy is a lot like homework, not all of us like having to do it, but if you don’t do it, you’re bound to get into trouble at some stage! You can find more information and exercise leaflets for injury prevention at the link below in the text.

So, What Causes Running Injuries?

There are a lot of theories as to what causes running injury but it seems the answer is fairly obvious: running! Research has stated that “running practice is a necessary cause for RRI (Running Related Injury) and, in fact, the only necessary cause.” With running being the key risk factor for running injuries what other factors influence risk? Historically a lot of emphasis was placed on intrinsic factors like leg length discrepancy, pronation (flat foot), high arches, genu valgus/varum (knock knee or bow legged) and extrinsic factors like ‘special’ running shoes being stability shoes or anti-pronation shoes, lack of stretching. However, recent studies have shown that there is no one specific risk factor that has a direct cause-effect relationship with injury rate or injury prevention. Whilst a thorough warm up, wearing compression garments, acupuncture and massage have some evidence in reducing injury rates it is all a little grey. Leaving you with a multifactorial buffet of probable contributing causes to running injuries.

There is however one specific factor that has been proven, and that is training error. Estimates suggest that anywhere from 60 to as much as 80% of running injuries are due to training errors. Runners become injured when they exceed their tissues capacity to tolerate load. A combination of overloading with inadequate recovery time. Poorly perfused tissues, such as ligaments, tendons and cartilage, are particularly at risk because they adapt more slowly than muscles to increased mechanical load.

Factors that affect how much training load a runner can tolerate before injury will also have a role. There are 2 key factors that appear to play a part in this – Body Mass Index (BMI > 25) and history of previous injury, especially in the last 12 months. While high BMI and previous injury may reduce the amount of running your body can manage, strength and conditioning is likely to increase it. There is a growing body of evidence supporting the use of strength training to reduce injury risk and improve performance. Training error and injury risk share a complex relationship – it may not be that total running mileage on its own is key but how quickly this increases, hill and speed training. The old saying of “too much, too soon” is probably quite accurate. Injury prevention is really a ‘mirror image’ of the causes of an injury. So, if you understand the primary reasons for getting injured then you are heading in the right direction to staying healthy this running season. You can find out more on injury prevention, with recommended exercise leaflets, at the following link.

We have produced a series of prevention and treatment guides for the 6 most common running injuries which you can download here https://cokinetic-production.s3.eu-west-2.amazonaws.com/uploads/2019/01/14/48b22bef40b3e857df0cc11016338dabe8fbda4d.pdf

What are The Most Common Injuries to be Aware of?

Body tissues such as muscles and tendons are continuously stressed and repaired on a daily basis, as a result of both ‘normal’ functional activities and sport. An overuse injury often occurs when a specific tissue fails to repair in the time available, begins to breakdown initially at microscopic level and then over time develops into a true injury. So, the first time you feel a soreness, a stiffness or a pain is not necessarily when it all began.

The most common injury is ‘runners knee’ or patellofemoral pain syndrome and accounts for over 40% of running injuries. This is followed closely by plantar fasciitis, achilles tendinopathy and then ITB (iliotibial band syndrome), shin splints and hamstring strain. These injuries generally need complete rest or at least a reduction in training volume and intensity. Followed by physical therapy to promote tissue healing and mobility. Although these are overuse injuries there is frequently an underlying muscle weakness and/or flexibility issue that needs to be addressed with specific rehabilitation exercises. Follow this link to find more specific information about each of the most common running injuries with specific rehabilitation leaflets for you to use.

You can find our prevention and treatment guides for the following running injuries at this link: https://app.co-kinetic.com/success-page/dont-run-into-trouble-a-content-marketing-campaign-for-therapists?userId=9929

  1. Medial tibial stress syndrome (shin splints)
  2. Patellofemoral pain (runner’s knee)
  3. Achilles tendinopathy
  4. Plantar fasciitis
  5. Hamstring strains
  6. Iliotibial band syndrome

While guidance can be given, it is general in its nature, whereas individual complaints may need individual attention. If you do pick up an injury (including ‘tightness’ ‘irritation’ or ‘niggle’) that you’re worried about then we can help, the sooner it’s treated the better. So, don’t delay in getting in touch!

https://burtonphysiogroup.com/what-we-treat/

Mental and Physical Healing: The Role of Physiotherapy in Holistic Health

Introduction

As a physical therapist, most of the time the patients I meet are people wanting to sort out a specific physical issue, whether it’s an ache, pain, or an injury. But what might surprise many is how closely our physical health ties into our mental well-being. Let’s explore not just the physical recovery you can expect from therapy but also the positive shifts in your state of mind.

  1. The Science Behind the Connection
  • How Your Body Reacts: We’ve all been there. When you’re in pain or nursing an injury, it’s not just the physical discomfort; your emotions feel the brunt of it too. Feelings of frustration, sadness or worry are natural responses to such physical setbacks. It’s a clear sign of how our physical state has a direct impact on our mental frame of mind.
  • Endorphins – Your Body’s Natural Mood Lifters: In our therapy sessions, many of the treatments and exercises we’ll go through encourage your brain to release something that can feel quite magical: endorphins. These are not just about easing pain. They’re nature’s way of lifting your mood, helping to fend off feelings of anxiety or gloom.
  1. Beyond Just Physical Healing

As physical therapists, our primary objective, of course, is to help you regain your physical prowess. However, it’s an added bonus for us to see the marked improvement in a patient’s outlook on life and their general mental disposition as they progress through therapy.

  • Regaining Control: One of the first psychological benefits you’ll notice is the sensation of regaining control over your body and life. As you work through each session and begin to see progress, there’s an undeniable sense of empowerment. You’re not just improving physically; you’re also reclaiming your life, bit by bit.
  • Social Interaction: Our sessions aren’t just about the exercises. They’re also a moment for human connection, especially for those who may feel isolated due to their physical conditions. Talking, laughing, sharing – these simple acts during therapy sessions can significantly boost one’s mental health.
  1. Exercises to Harness Both Mental and Physical Benefits

While I would always advise you to consult personally before trying out any exercise, there are some general exercises that not only benefit the body but also help alleviate stress and anxiety:

  • Deep Breathing Techniques: While simple, deep breathing exercises can do wonders in calming the mind and relaxing the body. It enhances oxygen distribution, which can aid in physical recovery and mental relaxation.
  • Guided Imagery: This technique involves focusing on pleasant images to replace negative or stressful feelings. It can be a significant complement to physical exercises, especially if you’re feeling particularly anxious or down.
  • Stretching Routines: Regular, gentle stretching doesn’t just aid in flexibility; it can also be a form of relaxation for the mind. Think of it as a moment of zen, a time to connect with yourself.
  1. The Influence of a Positive Mindset on Recovery

Every physical therapist knows that recovery isn’t just about the exercises or treatments we prescribe. It’s also significantly influenced by the mindset you, as the patient, bring to the table.

  • Placebo Effect in Physical Therapy: You might have heard of the placebo effect in medicine, where patients experience genuine relief from symptoms even when they’ve only taken a sugar pill. In physical therapy, a positive mindset can similarly lead to enhanced outcomes. Simply believing in the efficacy of the treatment can sometimes accelerate recovery.
  • Role of Stress in Recovery: Chronic stress has tangible physical repercussions – from tension headaches to muscle aches. By actively working on stress reduction techniques in tandem with physical therapy, you can enhance the speed and effectiveness of your recovery.
  • Emotional Resilience: Therapy can be tough. There will be days of frustration and maybe even pain. But adopting a positive, can-do attitude, coupled with the understanding that healing is a journey, can pave the way for smoother rehabilitation.
  1. The Bigger Picture: Holistic Health

Your physical condition doesn’t exist in a vacuum; it’s intrinsically linked to your mental and emotional state. As physical therapists, we always aim to approach your treatment holistically.

  • Nutrition and Mental Health: What you eat can directly impact your mental well-being. Consuming a balanced diet rich in essential nutrients not only aids in physical recovery but can also stave off feelings of lethargy or depression.
  • Sleep’s Role: Rest isn’t just about letting muscles heal; it’s also about mental rejuvenation. Ensuring you’re getting adequate sleep is crucial for both physical recovery and maintaining a positive, clear-headed mindset.
  • Stay Connected: Isolation, especially when recovering from significant injuries, can be detrimental. By staying connected with loved ones, friends, or support groups, you can foster a sense of belonging and positivity that can aid in your recovery journey.

In Conclusion

Physical therapy isn’t just a science; it’s an art that combines the physical with the psychological. When you align your mind and body in the journey towards recovery, you’re not only expediting the process but also enriching the quality of your life.

We also understand that each individual’s journey is unique. Localised support (Burton upon Trent, Derby or Shirley), tailored to the needs and contexts of our community, makes all the difference.

Remember, our door is always open. If you’re ever feeling uncertain, overwhelmed, or simply need advice on your rehabilitation journey, don’t hesitate to get in touch. We’re here to guide, support, and cheer you on every step of the way.

Physical Therapy Myths

Physical Therapy Facts vs. Fiction: Clearing Up Common Misunderstandings

Physical therapy plays a crucial role in many people’s recovery process. But like many health-related fields, it’s surrounded by myths that can lead to misconceptions. Misunderstandings about rehabilitation can sometimes delay or hinder proper treatment. In this article, we’ll set the record straight on some common myths to help ensure you get the most out of your physical therapy experience.

Myth 1: “Physical therapy is only for injuries.”

Many think you should only turn to physical therapy if you’ve suffered an injury. However, limiting it to just this context misses a broader picture of its benefits.

Physical therapy isn’t solely about mending what’s broken. A key aspect is prevention. By attending regular sessions, potential issues can be flagged and tackled early on, reducing the risk of serious problems down the line. For athletes, this approach translates to fewer injuries and enhanced performance. But it’s not exclusive to them; everyday individuals also benefit, experiencing better movement, posture, and less day-to-day discomfort.

Moreover, physical therapy is a vital tool for those with ongoing health issues, like arthritis or chronic back pain. Through tailored exercises and techniques, it aids in alleviating pain and making daily tasks more manageable.

An often-overlooked role of the therapist is education. By understanding their body and its nuances, patients are better equipped to handle issues themselves, leading to longer-term well-being.

In a nutshell, while injury recovery is a component of physical therapy, its scope is much wider, promoting better health, prevention, and overall well-being.

Myth 2: “Therapy is painful and makes conditions worse.”

One of the reservations some people have about physical therapy is the fear of pain. The old saying, “no pain, no gain,” might still sound familiar, but when it comes to physical therapy, this a very outdated belief.

While there might be moments of discomfort during certain exercises or treatments, the goal is never to induce pain. In fact, the whole purpose of physical therapy is to reduce pain and facilitate healing. If something does hurt, it’s a sign that the approach needs adjusting. Physical therapists are trained to recognise these signals and modify treatments accordingly.

It’s also worth noting that any initial discomfort usually stems from the body’s adjustment to new movements or exercises. This doesn’t mean the condition is worsening. On the contrary, these are often signs of progress and the body’s path to recovery.

In short, proper physical therapy is a healing process. It’s about working with the body, not against it. If there’s pain, it’s a prompt for the therapist and patient to communicate and make necessary changes, ensuring the most effective and comfortable recovery journey.

Myth 3: “I can use Dr Google and do my own rehab exercises at home without guidance.”

The internet is full of DIY tutorials for just about everything, including rehab exercises. While it’s good to take charge of your own health, there’s a crucial factor often missed: the expertise of a professional.

Sure, you can find exercises online tailored to specific injuries or ailments but without a trained eye to guide and correct, it’s easy to make small mistakes. These mistakes, though they might seem minor, can lead to further complications, incorrect healing, or even new injuries.

Physical therapists don’t just instruct on which exercises to do; they provide guidance on how to do them correctly. They monitor progress, adjust techniques when needed, and offer advice tailored to individual needs. Remember, what works for one person might not work for another. Having a physical therapist ensures the therapy is catered to your unique situation.

In essence, while self-management is a positive trait, rehab is one area where professional guidance is invaluable. It’s not just about doing the exercises; it’s about doing them right.

Myth 4: “Physical therapy is just about exercises.”

Some people, when thinking of physical therapy, immediately picture repetitive exercises or gym-like sessions. But there’s much more to it.

Physical therapy does incorporate movement and exercises, but it’s not limited to that. It’s a comprehensive approach to healthcare that addresses the root causes of your issues. For instance, manual techniques, where hands-on manipulation helps in relieving pain or improving function, are a staple in many treatment plans.

Additionally, patient education is a massive component. As therapists we spend time explaining conditions, answering questions, and guiding patients on lifestyle choices that might impact their recovery or general health. This knowledge transfer ensures our patients are informed and can make choices benefiting their long-term health.

Furthermore, depending on the condition or injury, we might employ treatments like heat or cold therapies, ultrasound, or even electrical stimulation.

To sum it up, physical therapy is a diverse field with a range of techniques to aid in recovery and health. Reducing it to just exercises overlooks the breadth and depth of care it offers.

Myth 5: “Surgery is a quicker and more effective solution.”

We understand the allure of seeking a quick fix. Surgery might seem like a direct approach to addressing an issue, but it’s essential to consider the bigger picture.

Firstly, surgery is not without its risks. While medical advances have made surgeries safer, every surgical procedure carries potential complications. Secondly, surgeries, especially the invasive ones, often come with a lengthy recovery time. And guess what? That recovery frequently involves physical therapy sessions to regain strength, mobility, and function.

Now, don’t get me wrong. There are cases where surgery is the best or even the only option. But there are also numerous instances where physical therapy can either prevent the need for surgery altogether or significantly improve post-surgical outcomes.

It’s also worth noting that surgery often addresses the symptom – the immediate problem – but not always the cause. Physical therapy looks at the body holistically. We aim to understand the root of the issue and address it, reducing the chances of recurring problems.

So, before deciding that surgery is the quickest or most effective route, let’s discuss your options. It’s vital to make an informed choice that considers both immediate and long-term effects.

Conclusion: Making Informed Choices in Your Rehab Journey

Misconceptions can easily steer anyone off course, especially when it comes to our health. Hopefully by debunking some of these common myths about physical therapy, we’ve provided you with a clearer understanding of the rehabilitation process and its value. If you’re ever in doubt or need clarification on any aspect of your treatment or recovery, please feel free to reach out to us at any time. Either drop into the clinic [you could insert the town for SEO] or give us a call. Your health and wellbeing deserve nothing but the best, most informed care.

Burton Physio Clinic

Burton Physiotherapy Clinic is Burton on Trent’s longest established Physiotherapy practice, based at the Coach House Clinic, The Abbey, Manor Drive, Burton on Trent. Working alongside our other Clinics in Derby and Dudley, we aim to help you return to full function in the quickest possible time. Most conditions can be treated and resolved quicker the earlier they are diagnosed and treated. Long-standing chronic problems often require more treatment than those diagnosed and treated early so don’t leave it festering until it’s too late!

If you are unsure whether you would benefit from physiotherapy, please feel free to ring our Burton-on-Trent Clinic or e-mail us for advice.

Derby Physiotherapy Clinic

At our Derby Physiotherapy Clinic therapists offer musculoskeletal services to the general and sporting population in Derby and the surrounding areas. We are highly trained with a wealth of experience and all our staff are fully qualified and HCPC registered or equivalent. We place great emphasis on proactive treatments and rehabilitation strategies, and offer a caring and professional service with supporting complementary therapies.

Based just outside Derby Town Centre, the Clinic complements our other Clinics in Burton-on-Trent and Dudley. If you are unsure whether you would benefit from physiotherapy, please feel free to ring our Derby Clinic or e-mail us for advice.

Physiotherapy in Dudley

Burton Physio Group are proud to announce the opening of our new Physiotherapy Clinic in Dudley, West Midlands. Based just outside Dudley Town Centre, the new Clinic will complement our existing Clinics in Burton-on-Trent and Derby. Our experienced physiotherapists will provide a variety of treatments at the Dudley Clinic, including-

  • Back Pain
  • Neck Pain
  • Foot & Ankle Pain
  • Shoulder Injuries
  • Knee Pain
  • Elbow Conditions
  • Hand & Wrist Injuries
  • Hip Pain
  • Sports Injuries
  • Arthritic Conditions
  • Work related/Occupational Injuries

We place great emphasis on proactive treatments and rehabilitation strategies, and offer a caring and professional service with supporting complementary therapies. If you are unsure whether you would benefit from physiotherapy, please feel free to ring our Dudley Clinic or e-mail us for advice.

Rugby Injuries

The Rugby Union Autumn internationals start this weekend, with the visit of the South African Spring Boks taking on England at Twickenham as the stand out fixture. Over the next 4 weeks, all of the Six Nation countries will pit their wit against at least one of the big 3 southern hemisphere teams. These fixtures are all about preparation for next years World Cup in Japan, and for England some good performances and victories will be most welcomed. However, the squad has quite a different look due to injuries to key personnel again. It may be time to see some lesser experienced players (on the international front) to stake a claim to be in the Six Nations and ultimately the World Cup squad next year. Injuries are part and parcel of Rugby, but one players misfortune can open the door for another to shine.

Having worked in Premiership Rugby in recent times, it is easy to see that the Lions Tour of New Zealand in the summer of 2017 left a number of players unable to replicate their form and fitness during the following season, and this also coincided with a dip in form for England last season. Even the British & Irish Lions captain Sam Warburton was forced to retire in the summer at the age of 29. He felt that he was just not able to recover from his injuries well enough to be able to perform at the same high level. These elite professional players have expert medical staff to help guide them through the injury process and return them back to the pitch as quickly and safely as possible. But professional sportsmen and women are not the only ones who pick up injuries. A recent study has shown that half of all sports injuries reported in A&E are sustained by a younger population. It appears that sporting participants under the age of 19 account for 47% of these cases, with football and rugby contributing the highest numbers. We all know that there are great benefits from sporting participation, but we also need to be mindful of the downside of participation. Injury prevention and injury rehabilitation are well established practices of sports medicine. Injuries do happen, that will always be the case, but if we can minimise their occurrence and their impact then more exposure to the positive side of sporting participation will be possible. and even more enjoyable. Especially for the younger population who may become the rugby stars of the future.

Check out the research by following the link to the BBC website www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-46059186

World Cup Fatigue?

The next round of international fixtures are upon us, and off the back of an impressive World Cup campaign in the summer, England will be looking to put in a good performance and get a couple of positive results against two very good opponents in Croatia and Spain. The problem for Gareth Southgate is that he has not been able to select some of his tried and tested players due to injury, with even more are dropping out of the squad during this weeks build up. Dele Alli is one of those unavailable for these set of fixtures, and it seems that he is suffering from a hamstring injury on this occasion. His Tottenham Manager, Mauricio Pochettino, has been quoted in the press recently as disappointed that his player has not taken more responsibility for his injury.

Athletes from all sports regularly push their physical capabilities to the limit, and in football they are often expected to play with ‘niggles’. A Manager or Head Coach will be the first person to praise a player for getting through a fixture when he is not 100%, but also the first to criticise if the gamble doesn’t play off, especially if the niggle becomes an injury that leads to the player needing to take time out

Dele Alli has often worn Kinetic Tape when he plays. That makes me think that he may often be playing with niggles, as many players do. Kinetic Tape can help to off load or even active muscles, so you can see why it has become popular over recent years if it enables an athlete to compete or a player to play on when they are not quite feeling 100%.

I do wonder if we will see a trend of injuries and/or a dip in individuals form this football season. With players involved in the World Cup suffering from fatigue (especially if their country reached the latter stages of the tournament). Maybe Dele Alli is one many who will miss a few fixtures during the 2018/19 campaign.