How are we affected by hypermobility?
Hypermobility is a common condition in the population. For those who don’t regularly compete in sport or those who don’t exercise often it may not cause any problems. However, for those who regularly engage in activity if you aren’t careful with how you move you may develop issues. Here is how we are affected by hypermobility and what we might be able to do to avoid issues.
How can hypermobility cause injury?
We can be hypermobile in one joint or in most joints of the body. Having more available range at a joint may help certain sports such as gymnastics, ballet, swimming. This is because these sports require our joints to work at different positions. Other sports may not require as much movement at the joint such as running, cycling, or rugby, or volleyball. In these circumstances, having too much range at a joint can cause problems. Constantly working through to the end range of a joint can predispose you to overuse injuries. A joint can become more unstable when it’s regularly pushed past its normal range. This instability can lead to joint pain, injury to the surrounding muscles, and ligament injury.
What can I do to avoid injury?
Avoiding injury requires you to be more in tune with your body. There is no cause for concern being hypermobile. It’s important not to constantly push your joints to their end ranges of motion during sport. Apart from the above mentioned sports, we don’t usually require our joints to go past their normal limits. In the short term, some proprioceptive taping can give you good joint angle awareness. Likewise, some rigid taping can limit your joint range to normal limits. A detailed strength and conditioning plan should be implemented for a long term solution. This program will consist of proprioceptive joint angle training, getting stronger in your available range, and then incorporating sports specific movements keeping an eye on your range.