Student athletes returning to sports may be at higher risk for injury
Monday, May 18, 2020

After weeks of time at home, student athletes returning to summer and fall sports may be at higher risk for injury.

Mason South doesn’t know yet if he’ll even have a football team in a few months for his senior year of high school.

“The most fun part, really, is just being in the locker room and being with our buddies,” said South.

Max Farris is in a similar dilemma for soccer.

“I had a spring season with three or four practices in and one tournament, and it got canceled. Kind of went right out the door,” said Farris.

Both athletes met up with Local 12 to show us how they have tried to stay in shape at the physical therapy and training center at Northern Kentucky University. Farris already had a stress fracture on his tibia before the season.

OrthoCincy’s Dr. Nick Gates and physical therapist Rob Neltner say if athletes didn’t keep up the workouts the way these athletes did, there could be consequences.“A stress fracture could be something they could do themselves if they ramp it up too fast,” said Neltner.

While most of those don’t require surgery, Dr. Gates says it could seriously sideline athletes and so could several other injuries he expects to see go up with little or no spring or summer training season.

“The ankle sprain is the most common injury in all sports,” said Dr. Gates. “We’ll see ankle injuries. We will see knee injuries, and we’ll see typical things that we see from trauma. I think the thing we’re a little bit more worried now is the overuse injuries. Overuse injuries are associated with moving from a relatively sedentary state to suddenly becoming active.”

So, a word of caution to those who are eager to get back into play:

“We don’t want that tendency to feel like we have to catch up, to lead to too many overuse injuries,” said Dr. Gates.

It’s not about getting back in the game, this training team says -- it’s about staying in it.