Basketball Injuries to the Foot and Ankle
Basketball players put a lot of stress on their feet which can lead to injuries to the foot and/or ankle from jumping, running, quick starts and stops, and contact with other players. Some common problems that can arise from playing basketball are:
- Ankle sprains that can damage the ankle ligaments, and can be associated with peroneal tendon injuries, fractures, and chronic ankle instability.
- Overuse and can lead to heel pain (plantar fasciitis), Achilles tendonitis, sesamoiditis, stress fractures, posterior tibial tendonitis (or PTTD) and calcaneal apophysitis in children and adolescents.
- Fracture of the fifth metatarsal base, which can be due to the constant, running and jumping, as well as foot structure.
Baseball Injuries to the Foot and Ankle
Every year, approximately three million children play baseball in the USA. Many of these kids play from elementary school throughout their middle and high school years. Common problems that can arise are:
- Ankle sprains that may occur while running, fielding balls, stepping on or sliding into bases. Sprains should be evaluated by a qualified clinician to determine the extent of injury. Untreated they can lead to chronic and recurrent .
- Overuse by focusing on only one sport can cause or heel pain such as , or in children and adolescents.
- Stress fracture
- Catchers are prone to plantar fasciitis from squatting constantly
- Peroneal tendonitis
- Anterior Ankle impingement (especially in catchers)
- Bruising can occur from impact with the ball or contact with other players
- Cleats can cause aggravation of , , and . It is important to make sure that cleats are fitted properly by someone trained to do so.
- A common injury seen in pitchers and catchers is i. If ignored, they can lead to a nail infection and cellulitis.
Common Signs of Foot Problems:
- Your child has poor balance or coordination, awkward gait, or tends to trip and fall.
- Your child habitually walks on their toes or walks with their feet turned in (“intoeing”) for no known medical reason.
- Your child fatigues easily and often wants to be carried.
- And Yes, If you child has any pain related to walking, or has frequent or severe growing pains.
Preventing Foot and Ankle Injuries in Kids
The growth plates in children’s bones are not mature until their later teen years, and these immature bones, as well as the surrounding tendons and ligaments, are more susceptible to both traumatic and stress injuries.
Proper footwear, including shoes specifically designed and constructed for one specific sport, is also an important part of preventing sports injuries in kids.
Foot orthotics can be a part of your injury prevention scenario, and if you see any signs of difficulty or pain when your child is playing sports, they should be evaluated by a certified clinician immediately.
It’s important to choose the correct foot orthotic for your child. Consider littleSTEPS® foot orthotics for kids up to teens, and QUADRASTEP® foot orthotics for older teens. They are the closet to prescription foot orthotics that you can get in a prefab and they are more affordable than custom orthotics!