How to solve the ligament injury problem in turf

Ligament injuries are one of the biggest concerns for artificial sports turf manufacturers and athletes all over the world. The term turf toe is used to describe injuries, which are extremely common among sportsmen who engage in football and tennis. It happens when you repeatedly jam the big toe while running and jumping around during practice and games. In this article, we will discuss the symptoms, causes, treatments, and prevention methods of ligament injuries while playing on artificial football turf.

Symptoms and causes of turf toe

When athletes and football players run and jump, the movement that causes the heel of their feet to lift while their toe stays on the ground, extending, causes stretch and tear in the ligaments and soft tissues of their big toe. The MTP joint (metatarsophalangeal joint) is what connects the big toe to the rest of your foot, and this is the joint that is affected when you have a turf toe injury.

The general symptoms of a typical turf toe injury include pain and swelling on the big toe, along with limited joint movement in that area. If the injury is due to repetitive movement, symptoms such as pain and swelling will start to get worse over time. However, if it is a result of a sudden jolt, the pain will be intense immediately and can worsen if left untreated. The pressure and hypertension on the big toe are what cause the turf toe, and it can occur by repeated injury or a forceful single jolt.

Although most often associated with artificial turf and football players, turf toe can affect tennis players and runners too, and it can happen on regular grass as well. Sudden injuries are the most common when it comes to turf toe, although injuries caused by continued damage also occur. A correct diagnosis and adequate treatment are very important when it comes to treating these injuries. To determine the right treatment, turf toe has been classified into three grades:

If it’s a grade 1 injury, it means that the soft tissue on the MTP joint is stretched, and you will experience a little pain when you touch this area. Whereas a grade 2 injury is a bit more severe, the turf toe injury is classified as grade 2 when the tissue is partially torn. When the tissue in your toe is completely torn, it is classified as a grade 3 injury. With a grade 3 injury, you will experience severe pain and swelling in the area, and there is a good chance you might have dislocated your metatarsophalangeal joint. Now let’s discuss the treatment methods and precautions to avoid such injuries in the future.


Turf toe treatment procedures

After a doctor’s examination and an MRI or X-ray scan to determine the grade of injury, the doctor suggests several treatment procedures. Grade 1 and grade 2 turf toe injuries usually heal with time and rest, along with some treatments you can do at home. Allowing this injury to heal itself is the best practice, and you will have to stay away from any kind of sports or activities during this time to properly heal. Based on the severity of your injury, you might get crutches to help you walk during this time.

Ice is applied to the injured toe as a primary treatment to subdue pain and swelling; it can also reduce the inflammation in the injured area. To reduce the pain and swelling, you will probably receive medications as well. physical therapy is another effective treatment method that could assist the healing process and increase the strength and flexibility of your metatarsophalangeal joint. A physical therapy program based on the level of your injury will include toe exercises that can speed up your recovery. It will also help you remove the stiffness in your joints due to continued inactivity.

If the injury is very severe and can’t be healed on its own, your doctor might suggest surgery to fix the damaged tissues and joint fractures. A surgical repair is very rare when it comes to a turf toe injury, and the recovery time will be longer than that of a regular injury. A grade 1 turf toe injury might heal on its own within a week with proper rest, while a grade 2 injury might take weeks, and when it comes to a grade 3 turf toe injury, it can take months to heal.


Tips to prevent injuries

Ligament injuries are quite common when it comes to sports like tennis and football. But they can take a lot of time to heal, prevent you from getting proper practice, and even cause you to miss games if you are a professional. Even though we might not be able to completely eliminate the risk of injury, with proper precautions, we can decrease it. So here are some tips to avoid being injured on the sports field.

Warm-up: Directly getting into practice without any warm-up exercises is a big reason for many injuries, so always remember to stretch a bit and do regular warm-up exercises before practice or a game.

Choose the right shoes: Using sport-specific shoes that complement your foot type can work magic if you frequently encounter injuries on the field. Some people have stiff feet and high arches, and some have low arches, so wearing the right shoes based on your foot type and the sport you engage in will protect you from unnecessary injuries.

Uneven surfaces: Being careful while running and practicing is important to avoid injuries. Avoid uneven surfaces, be careful during activities such as trail running and hill climbing, and choose an even surface to practice on.

Cross-training: Working the same muscles over and over again, so engaging in cross-training and different sports practices will increase your mobility and muscle strength. Using a brace on body parts like the ankles, where frequent injuries occur, can also help. At the end of the day, listen to your body, immediately stop if you experience pain while practicing, and, in case of injuries, take the proper time to heal and practice before getting back to the field.


Artificial turf and injuries

As we have already discussed, injuries are a big concern for artificial sports turf manufacturers as much as they are for athletes and sports enthusiasts. However, the technology and research behind sports fields are always pushing forward new methods and high-end building and maintaining techniques to avoid such risks and ensure the safety of sportsmen on the field. Artificial turf has truly transformed sports across the world in terms of convenience and the quality of the playing surface, and installing high-quality artificial turf with a superior build is one sure-shot solution to avoid frequent injuries on the field.

Surekha Exports is a turf construction company with more than 18 years of experience in the field, and we are always adopting brand-new technology and methods to provide premium-quality services. Ensuring the safety of athletes who use our turfs is a supreme concern for us, and our high-end FIFA Quality Pro-approved turf and scientific installation procedures help us build safe and efficient playing surfaces for our clients. With more than 700 well-designed projects across the country, we are among the best artificial sports court construction companies in India. Connect with us to learn more about our products and maintenance services.


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