Friday Night Lights: Protect Feet in Football

Football season is BIG in Texas! If you’re a fan, you’re looking forward to getting those action-packed weekends back: high schools on Friday, college on Saturday, pros on Sunday. If you’ve got a child playing under the Friday night lights, the excitement is especially high. That said, due to the grueling and physical nature of the sport, you’re going to want to do everything you can to help them prevent an unnecessary foot and ankle injury.

Protect Feet in FootballThe incidence rates are higher than you might think. A study a few years back from the American Journal of Orthopedics found that anywhere from 9% to 39% of college players will suffer at least a minor foot or ankle injury in a given year. “Skill” players like running backs and wide receivers, as well as offensive linemen, are especially susceptible given the amount of force and torque their lower limbs must sustain. The most common injuries are ankle sprains and Achilles tendon injuries, with turf toe, metatarsal fractures, muscle strains, cramps, and other problems not too far behind.

How can you help your youth athlete protect their feet? Here are a few tips:

  • Don’t skimp on gear. As with any other shoes, you want your cleats to fit properly (snug but not too restrictive) throughout, with enough wiggle room for toes and plenty of cushioning and support. Beyond that, look for mid-cut or high-cut collars, which may do a better job of protecting your ankles. You may consider playing with a lace-up ankle brace if you have a history of sprains or recurrent injury in the past.
  • Always warm up and cool down. Cold muscles are more injury-prone, so take a few minutes to warm them up and stretch them out beforehand. When practice of the game is over, slowly cooling down and stretching again helps prevent the build-up of toxins in the muscles.
  • Drink lots of water. Even mild dehydration can throw off concentration, body temperature regulation, and athletic performance. This greatly increases the risk of an accidental, preventable injury.
  • Stay fit—but don’t over-train. Going into the season already in shape helps avoid those “too much too soon” injuries like tendon ruptures. At the same time, though, aggressive and high-impact exercise and practice too many times per week will cause injury, too. Tell your child to listen to their body and take a break if significant discomfort develops.

Of course, even when parents and kids take precautions, there are some measures that the school must be responsible for. Quality playing field conditions, on-site and licensed athletic trainers and medical personnel, and coaches who understand the limits of young athletes and are trained to recognize and prevent serious injuries are major assets for injury prevention. If you feel that your school is not doing enough to protect the health of its student athletes, speak up!

We hope that you have a safe, enjoyable football season! If you or your young athlete do experience any troubles with your feet or ankles, make sure you schedule a time to see the team at Dallas Podiatry Works. Quick treatment is the key to getting back on the field as soon as possible. Give us a call today at 972.853.7100.

The doctor has great “bedside manners” when talking to patients. Great staff and comfortable atmosphere.

Derrick W.

The staff at Dallas Podiatry Works could not have been more courteous, helpful, and professional in doing their job. They made me feel comfortable when I was there, which is certainly appreciated. They answered all the questions that I had and just made each visit the most pleasurable that it could be. I would highly recommend them to anyone needing this type of foot care.

Joseph B.

I would highly recommend Dr. Brook to anyone with foot problems–especially problems that stump other podiatrists. He really is very caring and very knowledgeable.

Jeannette H.

Dr. Joel Brook and the staff were nice and helpful. Though I was a new patient, I got right in as soon as they were open in my preferred location. They diagnosed the problem and provided medicines along with a perfect gel bandage so I could keep exercising while my toes healed. My toes already hurt less and look a little better each day. If I have future issues, I will be a repeat customer. Here’s hoping I don’t, but at least I know my feet are in good hands.

Meryl E.

I visited this office for an ingrown toe nail a few years ago. After seeing another doctor, who made it worse, he referred me to Dallas Podiatry Works. The doctor there was able to fix my problem. I’m not great with reviews, all I can tell you is that this doctor and staff will have you up and running or doing whatever it is you do in no time. You will be in great hands. You’d be a fool not to use this doctor. Now its time to visit him again for the other toe.

Google User

Been having bad ankle pains for 6 months was referred here and it was a great visit ladies in the front desk medical assistants and the Doctor were all very friendly and make you feel very comfortable.

Elizabeth G.

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Dallas Office: 12221 Merit Drive, Suite 280, Dallas, TX 75251

Plano Office: 5068 W. Plano Parkway, Suite 155, Plano, TX 75093

Join the 100,000 happy feet that have found relief at Dallas Podiatry Works! Our Dallas podiatrist and Plano podiatrist provides 5-star-rated foot care and ankle care. Our advanced foot care includes children's foot care, sports-related foot injuries, bunion treatment, bunion removal surgery, toenail fungus treatment, ingrown toenail treatment, hammertoe treatment, claw toe treatment, neuroma treatment, heel pain relief, limb salvage, wound care, arthritis treatment, safe pedicure, medicures, corn removals, callus removals, wart removals and more.
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