Discussion with military personnel about sports injuries and their prevention

“Injury prevention in competitive sports”

In celebration of the centennial anniversary of the Latvian armed forces, a major sporting event - Patria Tough Run obstacle course competition will be held on June 15. The participants will include Latvian and allied military personnel, as well as the Ministry of Defence staff. As our contribution, we visited the military personnel one month prior to this event, presenting a course “Injury prevention in competitive sports”.

The full range of specialists relevant to people engaged in vigorous physical activity were present: traumatologist and orthopaedist Dr. Andrejs Finogejevs, physical medicine and rehabilitation specialist Dr. Alla Hohlova, and sports diagnostics specialist Jēkabs Grinbergs. We discussed the characteristic sources of pain in shoulder and knee joints, injury due to overload, stress fractures, and whether vigorous, frequent excercise can guarantee outstanding achievements in sports.

The comprehensive and captivating lecture was centered on a single message – all movement of the body can be understood through the science of biomechanics. If some part of the body is not optimally balanced, other parts – muscles, tendons, and joints will be forced to compensate. This can lead to overload during vigorous excercise, resulting in pain, swelling, and impaired movement.

Taking care of body means that, instead of pressing forward with uncomfortable or painful excercise, we should pay attention to balancing the biomechanical functions of the body and only then continue striving for the best results in our favourite sports or work tasks. This intelligent approach requires time and patience, but is highly recommended by trauma surgeons and orthopaedists who have observed in their daily work that the majority of overload injuries and fractions could have been easily prevented.

As the presenters of „Injury prevention in competitive sports” course to the military personnel, we experienced many different attitudes, from quiet skepticism to lively enthusiasm, and received many questions. We are convinced that this essential knowledge will help all participants to prepare for the obstacle course competition in a more effective and safe manner, while more responsibly reacting to pain and discomfort.

We wish patience in preparation and success in the competition to the participants of the Patria Tough Run dedicated to the centennial anniversary of Latvian armed forces!