Sports Injuries

Sports injuries are probably one of the most common injuries in this day and age, making us go to the doctor. The extent of the damage is as different as each patient. In general, ⅕ of all injuries in Germany are specific sports injuries.


Doctors and medical centres specialising in Sports injuries

Specialists in the Field of Sports Injuries

Information About the Field of Sports Injuries

The Most Common Sports Injuries

The most common sports injuries are contusions and sprains, with over 35 percent, closely followed by dislocations and fractures with about 25 percent. Tendon, muscle, and ligament injuries still occur in up to 22 percent of all cases.


Muscle strain is the most harmless form of muscle fiber rupture. Hurried, uncontrolled movements and bending over can cause a strain, but training without prior warming up can also lead to a strain. A characteristic feature of a pulled muscle is a pain in the form of a seizure with direct restriction of the range of motion. The treatment of a pulled muscle should be started as soon as possible with the simple RICE rule: rest, ice, compression, and elevation.


The most common cause of a sprain is abrupt movements affecting the ligamentous apparatus, which can be overstretched and lead to severe pain. Swelling and hematoma typically follow after a few hours. The most frequently affected joints are the ankle and knee joints, but the hand and elbow joints can also be sprained. Again, insufficient warm-up exercises during training are a contributing factor to sprains. The sprain therapy even starts with the RICE rule: rest, ice, compression, elevation.


Contusions are common sports and everyday injuries; they are usually caused by hits or pressure crushing nerves, blood, and lymph vessels. The soft tissue is pressed against more hardened tissue such as cartilage or bone. A symptom is probably in all cases an edema formation, i.e., an accumulation of fluid in the bruised area due to the crushing of the vessels. It is not uncommon for hematomas to occur, which can become inflamed over time so that a medical checkup should always be carried out. There are different types of contusions, for example, muscle contusions, bone contusions, and joint contusions. Usually, the bruise disappears after a break, which is best followed according to the RICE rule. If the symptoms (extensive bruising, large swelling, pain, or deformity) persist for a long time, a doctor should be consulted.

Muscle Fiber Rupture

Muscle fiber ruptures usually feel like knife wounds or small needle pricks to patients. The affected area also has a severe restriction of movement, and the pain can vary in intensity depending on the extent of the rupture. The most harmless form of muscle fiber rupture is the muscle strain; the most consequential form is the direct muscle rupture, in which the entire muscle is torn off. In almost all cases, a hematoma occurs, which may not always be visible. The most common cause of a torn muscle fiber is abnormal overstretching of the muscle, usually due to inadequate warm-up training. The physician can initially detect a torn muscle fiber by palpation, but the exact diagnosis can only be clarified by MRI or sonography. Muscle fiber ruptures are also treated with the RICE rule, although it can take up to several months before the muscle is fully functional again.

Torn Ligament

Torn ligaments are a widespread type of injury, accounting for 20 percent of all sports injuries. Often the ankle joint, but also the knee joint, is affected. Torn ligaments usually occur when the ligamentous apparatus is excessively twisted, leading to the tearing of single or complete ligaments. The most common form of a torn ligament is a torn outer ligament of the ankle joint. Torn ligaments are usually treated conservatively, i.e., physiotherapeutic with the help of orthoses. Only in severe cases of torn ligaments can the surgical intervention be considered when several ligaments are torn.

What Are the Most Common Causes of Sports Injuries?

One wrong move and it can happen: you have a sports injury. The causes can be very different, whether it is tennis, jogging, or soccer. A distinction is made between endogenous and exogenous injuries. In the case of endogenous injuries, the athlete has contracted the injury himself, for example, by insufficient warming up. In contrast, in an exogenous injury, the noxious agent was inflicted by an opponent, for example.

Widespread causes:

  • Inadequate warm-up training
  • Generally, poorly trained physical condition
  • Incorrect movements
  • Abnormal force effects due to exceeding own limits
  • Slip or bend over
  • Little or no breaks between training sessions
  • Foreign force influence by opposing players

First Aid for Sports Injuries

The treatment of most sports injuries is simple and realistic for everyone. The important thing is the point in time when the therapy is started; the earlier, the better! The RICE rule is used here:

1st R for rest: Immediately interrupt the sporting activity, immobilize the body part instead of continuing heroically.

2nd I for ice: cooling, which will constrict the vessels and reduce a hematoma and swelling formation. Do not place the ice directly on the skin; always have a cloth between the ice and the skin.

3rd C for compression: A tightened dressing reduces the extent of swelling and prevents blood from reaching peripheral areas and causing pain due to pressure. Cooling ointments underneath a bandage have also proved useful.

4th E for elevation: The body part should be positioned as high as possible so that the fluid that accumulates can drain better and reduce post-traumatic pain and swelling.

Painkilling ointments and gels based on ibuprofen or arnica are also popular for severe pain.

In case of severe injuries with severe pain, a specialist in orthopedics and trauma surgery should be consulted as soon as possible.

Which Doctors and Clinics Are Specialized in Sports Injuries?

The specialist for sports injuries is the sports orthopedist or orthopedist, who carried out various clinical tests to assess the injury's function and extent. The orthopedist also uses imaging procedures such as MRI, CT, X-ray, and ultrasound examinations to confirm the diagnosis. If conservative therapy is not sufficient, the sports physician will recommend surgery.

We will help you find an expert for your disease. All listed doctors and clinics have been reviewed by us for their outstanding specialization in sports injuries and are awaiting your inquiry or treatment request.


Egelhardt, Martin: Sportverletzungen - Diagnose, Management und Begleitmaßnahmen. 3. Auflage. Urban & Fischer 2016, ISBN 978-3-437-24092-8

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