Avoiding Orthopaedic Injuries at the Beach

July 5, 2018 | By: Raleigh Orthopaedic Team

Summer time is a busy time for vacations to the beach with family. As we prepare for our upcoming trips we often take the necessary precautions to avoid sunburns, dehydration, and strong surf and currents. An active day on the beach often, however leads to orthopaedic injuries. Below is a list of common activities at the beach that result in injuries:

  • Running on the beach: What better way to squeeze in a workout while you are vacationing than a nice run on the beach? Unfortunately, the uneven surfaces can sometimes lead to more harm than good. Since the beach is sloped towards the water it increases the strain on the hips and knees. If you are planning on a run at the beach be sure to look for areas with firm, flat sand.
  • Beach Games: One of the most enjoyable parts to a trip to the beach is the wide open space for activities; whether it’s a game of whiffle ball or a beach volleyball game the quick movements and the uneven surface can make you very susceptible to injuries. To help avoid injuries, proper warm-up and stretching is recommended even for friendly games with the kids. When pain occurs you should stop before you get injured.
  • Splashing in the Waves: Swimming in ocean can be a lot of fun, but in addition to watching out for rip currents, sharks, jellyfish, etc. it is also important to remember orthopaedic injuries can occur too. Some of the most common injuries we see are knee injuries, such as medial collateral ligament (MCL) and anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injuries. These injuries occur as a result of twisting and awkward landings. To avoid injuries, pay attention to the waves. Even in the shallow water the waves can be stronger than anticipated and cause you to lose your footing.
  • Going for a bike ride: Bicycling is great activity for the summer days at the beach, but it is important to pay attention to avoid accidents. The most common cycling injuries that we see are broken collar bones and wrists. To help avoid injuries, always wear a helmet, follow the rules of the road and avoid riding on high traffic roads.

Spending an active day at the beach is a great exercise, but be sure to take the proper pre-cautions to avoid orthopaedic injuries.