Injury Advice & FAQs

Our FAQ section has been designed to give you more information about an injury, ache or pain you might be experiencing. We by no means expect our advice will treat or cure, but hopefully give you more of an insight into what’s going on and the best way towards recovery.

We will start by uploading common injuries we come across at our clinic, but we welcome your questions which our experts will do their best to respond to and post on this open advice portal.

So please send your questions to faq@stansfieldsportsinjuryclinic.co.uk for free physio advice and guidance.

Injury FAQ

Shin splints after hill training, what is it and what can I do to help ease the pain?

Shin Splints occurs when there is a restriction of space in the anterior compartment of the lower leg. The severity of shin splints can vary massively, some people have a slight niggle, some people can't walk?

Hill training forces your foot position into excessive dorsi - flexion (bringing your foot towards you), over and over with each step. During training, your muscles contract to provide blood and therefore oxygen to fuel the muscles and with this they can increase in size. The muscle of the anterior shin is called the Tibialis Anterior. Around your muscles is a thick sheath that encases them called myofascia. The myofacia is a system within your body that interlinks your whole body together, it also works as a shock absorber. When the myofascia is tight, the muscles are contracting, the foot is in excessive dorsi - flexion the whole anterior compartment of the leg is then compromised in space. The muscles become inflamed, the myofascia remains tight and you experience the throbbing and shooting pains you classify as "Shin Splints". In some cases, the myofascia and muscles can 'tug' on the Tibia bone.

Self-treatment of Shin Splints focuses on stretching out and creating more space in the anterior shin, releasing excessive blood pooling in the muscles and decreasing the inflammation of the muscles through icing techniques.

Stretches:

  • Very slowly point your foot and toes away from you (plantar flexion), until the point of a mild stretch. The stretch should be felt through the front of the leg, shin and possibly the top of the foot. If this feels too easy, slowly tilt your foot inwards (inversion), which will intensify the stretch. You must ensure the stretch felt is mild.
  • Hold the stretch for 17 - 20 seconds. Slowly release the stretch, then aim to go a little further with the stretch. Repeat and hold for a further 17 - 20 seconds. Repeat this for 3 times in total.

Icing:

  • Apply a cover on your skin such as a towel. Using a bag of ice or a frozen product, apply over the towel and leave for upto 20 minutes.
  • Leave at least a 60 minute interval and repeat the protocol. Repeat throughout the day or as necessary.
  • Do this for upto 48 - 72 hours following the initial pain.

Elevation:

  • Sitting or lying, elevate your lower leg to approximately a 90° angle or roughly above your heart level. An example of this is lying on a couch and resting your leg on the arm of the couch. This will allow excessive blood pooling to drain from your lower leg.
  • When your leg is elevated, ensure that you aim to point your foot and toes away from you.

Seek help from a Clinician:

If the pain persists, ensure you book in to see a Musculoskeletal Specialist here at Stansfield Sports Injury Clinic. They will look at the cause and biomechanics behind your pain and injury and treat it accordingly.

Is my Neck and Shoulder pain caused by poor posture at work?

I feel stiff through my Neck and Shoulders and sometimes get headaches after sitting for a few hours at my desk at work. I have had my eyes tested and everything is fine there. It's now sore when I am training at the gym. When I lift my arms up, I get a pain that feels deep in the front of my shoulder. I have started to wake in my sleep, getting the same pain.

You are not alone.

SSIC have many patients complaining of similar pains. Often, when sitting down for long periods our bodies can change into different positions. If you had a picture of yourself sat at your desk at the start of the day and compared it to a picture of you at the end of the day, you would be able to see how your position and posture had dramatically changed.

How is your desk posture?

  • Do your arms have to reach up to your desk?
  • Do you push your head forward towards your computer?
  • Do you tilt your head up to read the text on the computer?
  • Is your middle and upper back slouched over the computer?
  • Are your shoulders rounded towards the front like a 'C' shape?

Any of these one desk postures can cause pain, stiffness, dull aches, sharpness through the Neck, Shoulders, Spine or Arms. They can also cause Headaches, Face Ache, Neuralgia, pins and needles into the arms and even sharp pains when you cough, laugh or sneeze.

Poor posture can cause your shoulders to hunch up to assist the position. This in turn switches the upper Trapezius muscles to shorten and contract. Over time they fatigue and can no longer hold this position. They become tired, sore and tender to touch as the muscles remain in a constant state of contraction (muscle spasm).

You may also feel lumps and thickness through the muscles and your shoulders can become rounded towards the front. This in turn restricts and compromises the space in the anterior part of the Shoulder. The Shoulder joint has many muscles, ligaments and tendons that hold it in place, many of which cross over the shoulder joint itself (Glenohumeral joint) or even the Acromioclavicular joint (AC joint) as well. When the joint space is restricted wear and tear can occur on the structures that pass through it. Otherwise known as a Rotator Cuff Injury. Over time this can create a dull ache in the Shoulder, sharpness or pins and needles through the Shoulder or into the arm.

If the Neck is pushed forward, tilted up or tilted back for any long periods this also causes a shortening and contractions in certain muscles groups, while other muscles and structures become lengthened and therefore, strained. It can also cause the vertebral joints of the Spine to be restricted and compromised in space.

This can cause the joints of the Spine, in particular the upper Cervical and middle Thoracic Spine to become stiff, sore and irritated. Occasionally, the Spinal joints can then press onto Spinal structures such as nerves and discs causing further discomfort. Like with the Shoulder joint, the muscles are overworked.

Often the muscles at the front of the Neck the Sternocleidomastoid that attaches onto the skull underneath the ear, the Scalenes that attach onto the Cervical spine and the Pectorals muscles in the chest are tight, sore and tender. They can often refer pain into the head and face, and restrict the movement of the Neck.

The Thoracic (middle) spine can be overworked as a result of the malfunctioning Cervical (upper) Spine. Additionally, it too can be forced anteriorally with the joints becoming irritated and stiff. The Scapulas (Shoulder Blades) will often become depressed and protracted (hang low and to the side), which also interferes with the functioning of the whole Shoulder complex.

Seek help from a Clinician:

The best way to combat Neck and Shoulder pain is to seek professional advice from a Sports and Musculoskeletal Specialist, to ensure your advice and treatment is specific to your individual needs. Please call 01204 770308 today to book a free consultation & assessment with one of our highly trained and experienced clinic staff who can provide a full breakdown of your current injury and pain symptoms.