Published in the Northern Echo Regional Newspaper (Feel Great For Sport Column) on Saturday 14th December 2013.
Watch this space over the next few weeks as lists get drawn up and grow rapidly.
Soon, there will be an unwanted list on the wall of every managers office that will need some serious attention and will likely be every bit as long as an 8 year olds Christmas wish list.
Just not as joyous or hopeful.
Brendan Rodgers over at Liverpool is one such manager who is beginning to watch his injury list grow.
First on that list Daniel Sturridge with an ankle sprain, and now England Captain Steven Gerard with a Hamstring injury that will likely see him miss the entire Christmas fixture list.
It’s the time of year when hamstring injuries are rife. And expect a speight of them over the next two to three weeks as games come thick and fast.
And this can be a real problem for teams and players at the lower end of the leagues.
Let me tell you why.
It’s as much to do with the level of increased activity, as it is to do with the serious amounts of travel time that most teams are required to do.
I remember back in my Darlington Physio days, Christmas would quite literally “pass us by”. Because no sooner where we there and back from a game at somewhere like Cheltenham, where we then back on another coach two days later heading to Swansea or Yeovil.
The fixture list was never programmed to be kind to players and their families over Christmas.
And the real problem comes in that players would spend so much time sitting on coaches and even sleeping in unfamiliar beds. Cue a stiff and achy back and hamstring muscles that were spending more time in a shortened position whilst sitting on a bus.
Together is a recipe for disaster and is the equivalent of holding a players hand all the way to stiffness and injury. Not so bad for the ‘big boys’ in the premier league with a chartered plane flight arranged, but even then, hamstring strains are very difficult to avoid.
Because add in extra sitting, change of beds, increased activity with more fixtures, change of training routines and surfaces, then there’s a very good chance you will see your team blighted by hamstring injuries this festive season.
A great stocking filler for anyone suffering for a hamstring injury could be a few visits to see a physio. Because once you’ve suffered with a hamstring strain, there really is no other option.
Without the right stretching, massage, strength exercises and knowing exactly when it is safe to return to sport, you will give your self a very good chance of being a life long hamstring victim.
One word of caution with hamstring injuries: There is a reason that Steven Gerrard is predicted to be out for 4 weeks. And bearing in mind that he has access to the worlds best medical team, there are no short cuts to a safe and full recovery from this type of injury.
More when you look here www.paulgoughphysio.com/sports-injury-clinic