Board certified in emergency medicine and sports medicine, Dr. Stu Steinman is an alumnus of the Stony Brook University School of Medicine and formerly served as an attending physician in the emergency department at Milford Hospital in Connecticut. Having practiced medicine in New York for over 20 years, Stu Steinman, MD, focuses on preventing and treating sports injuries in his practice at Westsports Medicine.
Strains and sprains are the most common sports injuries. As with a spring, tissue stretched within normal limits will return to its original length. However, overextension of the tissue beyond its limits will cause injury. Sprains occur when the ligaments, the rigid connecting bands between the joints and bones, are pulled beyond their threshold, causing tearing or deformation. Strains result from a similar overstretching injury to the tendons or fibers functioning as anchors between the bones and muscles.
Sports injuries are often preventable with proper conditioning. The director of athletic medicine at Princeton University, Dr. Margot Putukian, suggests that a mild warm-up program prior to exercising will help prevent injury by increasing blood flow and loosening muscles. In addition, Dr. William Roberts, a spokesperson for the American College of Sports Medicine, says that stopping a workout prior to reaching muscle fatigue will also reduce the risk of injury.