Injury Prevention and Management – Pan Pacific Masters Games 2014

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“Moo cow or argyle blue?” This was the question of the day. It was the question of the day before and the day before that.

The Pan Pacific Masters Games are held on the Gold Coast every 2 years and hosts more athletes and more sports than the Olympics. The participants are old enough to know better but thanks to the miracles of Rocktape, Dencorub and knee guards, they keep fronting up for one more go. The youngest competitors at the games are 19 year old divers participating in the diving. The oldest are 90-something’s involved in the swimming. The philosophy of the games is about playing good sport, being good sports and meeting lots of wonderful people. The sports were great for tourism on the coast as well as the local pharmacies who were running out of strapping tape at a great rate.

The netball competition had teams divided into different age groups with the oldest category involving players 55 years and over.  As we age, the importance of remaining active takes greater importance for the prevention and management of chronic diseases such as diabetes, hypertension , osteoporosis and heart disease. Sports like netball encourage cardiovascular fitness, balance and strength. It was truly inspiring to see ladies in their 60’s chasing after the ball and taking high passes.

In order to remain in the game, injury prevention and management becomes an art form. The benefits of a warm up and cool down, appropriate hydration and good equipment are soon realised. Netball shoes need to be resilient, have good forefoot stability and be able to handle the rigours of a hard court. Shoes that are too big or ill fitting can cause just as many complications as those that are too small.  A sport specific inner sole with a firm density PPT or neoprene layer can also be beneficial for reducing the pain associated with the high impact forces.

Hinkler Podiatry have been proud to be associated with the Screaming Divas, a team that even though we didn’t win a medal, played excellent netball and had a screaming good time. And despite our daily aches and pains, turned up everyday and laughed with each other. But not before passing around the box of Rocktape. Cow print tape today.

Alex Bramley

About Alex Bramley

Alex has a commitment to public health including prevention, education, screening at risk populations, empowering people to make good health decisions and reducing the burden of chronic disease. In addition to clinical expertise, Alex is a Nordic Walking enthusiast and has an interest in cycling related foot problems. Connect with Hinkler Podiatry on Twitter (@HinklerPodiatry), Facebook (www.facebook.com/HinklerPodiatry) and LinkedIn

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