Common injuries:

Ankle Sprain

This involves stretching or tearing of ligaments supporting the ankle joint. The most common mechanism of injury is rolling over the ankle, sole of foot faces upwards (inversion sprain) and damages the ligaments on the outside of the ankle.

An ankle sprain is an extremely common injury, not only in sport but everyday injuries, and unfortunately is a reoccurring injury, therefore injury rehabilitation and prevention is vital.


RICE (Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation)

Ankle sprains can take 4-8 weeks to heal, depending on severity of injury.

Preventing further injury:

  • There is an increased risk of 40-50% of re injury
  • Warm up efficiently
  • Ankle strengthening programme, flexibility exercises, balance and ankle proprioception
  • Sports massage to decrease scar tissue and promote healing
  • Wear appropriate footwear with good ankle support

Tennis Elbow

Tennis elbow or lateral epicondylitis is a very common injury in the upper limb. It occurs most commonly in the tendon approximately 2cm below the outer edge of the elbow joint. Inflammation is rarely present but an increase in pain receptors makes the area extremely tender to touch.

Signs and symptoms

  • Pain just below the outside of elbow joint.
  • Weakness in the wrist when carrying out simple tasks; opening a door, turning a key in a lock, shaking hands.
  • Pain on the outside of the elbow joint when the hand is bent backwards (extended) at the wrist against resistance.


  • Overuse or repetitive strain caused by bending back (extension) of the wrist against resistance.
  • Can be from tennis, squash, badminton but also common after excessive wrist use in day to day life (painting, typing).

Preventing further injury

  • RICE
  • Wear a brace or support when returning to play to protect the tendon whilst it is healing.
  • Sports massage therapy
  • Rehabilitation programme
  • Identify and correct any predisposing factors.

Iliotibial band (ITB) syndrome (Runners knee)

The ITB is a thick, fibrous sheath of connective tissue which attaches at the top of the hip bone and the tensor fascia latae muscle.

It runs down the outside of the thigh and inserts into the outer edge of the shin bone.

Its purpose is to straighten the knee and abduct the hip (move out to the side).

Signs and Symptoms

  • Pain on the outside of the knee
  • Tightness in the ITB
  • Pain aggravated by running, particularly downhill
  • Weakness in hip abduction
  • Tender trigger points in the gluteal area maybe present.


  • Rest. Avoid downhill running
  • Ice
  • Stretch after training
  • Massage (deep tissue, friction)
  • Rehab- including stretches and exercises to strengthen the hip
  • TENS, ultrasound


  • Naturally tight ITB
  • Weak hip muscle (gluteus medius)
  • Overuse
  • Overpronation
  • Excessive hill running
  • Leg length difference
  • Incorrect running shoes.

* Most of these factors can be addressed through changes to training programme and the use of insoles or heel pads.

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