Hello everyone, its Andrew here, back this week with a new blog, this time focused on apophysitis pathologies. For those of you who aren’t aware, apophysitis is a term used to collectively describe inflammation or stress injuries to an apophysis, which is a bony outgrowth where muscles can attach. These bony points are also often referred to as growth plates. These injuries commonly occur in active young people as a result of repeated movements resulting in cumulative stress, which can result in very uncomfortable and irritable symptoms.

Sever’s and Osgood-Schlatters are the most commonly occurring apophysitis pathologies and concern the calcaneus (heel) and tibial tuberosity (top of shin) respectively. Youths and adolescents who regularly partake in a sport involving repeated actions such as running, and jumping are very often affected by one or more of these growth-related conditions at some point during their physical development. Individuals experiencing flare ups of these conditions will suffer with chronic pain which is often made worse when they complete their usual training.

My work with Nottingham Forest’s academy has given me the opportunity to work with individuals affected by these conditions and I have therefore developed a good understanding of how to manage the symptoms of an affected person and correctly manage and progressively increase their load to allow them to return to their activity pain free.

Generally, management of these conditions involves an initial reduction in repetitive load ie reduced training or competition in the individual’s chosen activity, to a level which does not cause flare ups in symptoms. This should be partnered with the introduction and progression of specific mobility and strengthening exercises to help with the management of symptoms and reduce the likelihood of future flare ups. Over time, a re-introduction to full training and competition can be gradually reached in line with the person’s symptoms and progress with targeted exercises.  Early intervention in apophysis conditions can really benefit the young athlete and may prevent the condition becoming more chronic.

If you are aware of a friend or family member suffering with symptoms of apophysitis/growth related injury please do feel free to book in to see me, I would love to help.

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