Rugby Injuries

 

 

 

Rugby is a popular sport in areas of the world like Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Europe, and Argentina. It’s played at recreational, junior, collegian, and professional levels. While certainly not a sport played to the degree football is in America, it has gained popularity in American over recent years. According to the Journal of Athletic Training, there were around 60,000 U.S. rugby players in 2006.

How Do Rugby Injuries Occur?

Due to the fast-pace and aggressive play, intensity, and high levels of player-to-player full contact, rugby is a sport with many injuries. Some studies have shown the average injury rate for a professional rugby player is up to three times higher than those participating in other contact sports like soccer and football.

Most rugby injuries can be generally divided into overuse injuries, such as from training or practicing too long; too frequently; or too hard, or traumatic injuries, such as a contusion or fracture from colliding with another player.

What Are Some Common Rugby Injuries?

Of course, the full-contact nature of the sport and the often lacking amount of protective gear can leave a rugby player at risk of suffering lacerations and concussions to the head and bone fractures to the upper and lower extremities. However, a large percentage of rugby-related injuries are actually soft tissue injuries.

Most common soft tissue rugby injuries:

Hamstring Strain

The hamstrings consist of the semitendinosus, semimembranosus and biceps femoris muscles and their tendons. The hamstrings run along the back of the thigh and are used every time the heel moves toward the buttocks (knee flexion) and every time the thigh moves toward the rear (hip extension). As such, the hamstrings are highly susceptible to injury during sports that require sprinting and sudden high velocity movements.

A hamstring strain occurs when one or more the hamstring muscles or tendons become stretched or torn. This may occur due to over-striding during a rugby run, sudden changes in direction to avoid a tackle, a tackle that results in the leg being manipulated into an awkward position, and so on.

Like all strains, a hamstring strain is graded based on the degree of injury:

Grade I - the stretching or microscopic tearing of the muscle and/or tendon fibers. There may be some mild tightness at the back of the thigh when the muscle is stretched, but the hamstring maintains its function.

Grade II - moderate partial tearing of the muscle and/or tendon fibers. The thigh may be swollen, bruised, warm, painful, and tender to the touch. Flexibility and gait may be affected.

Grade III - significant to complete tearing of the muscle and/or tendon fibers. The hamstring area will usually be significantly swollen, tender, painful, and warm. It may be impossible to walk unassisted and there may be a localized burning or cramping sensation. If the hamstring completely ruptures, there may be a palpable gap felt within the muscle.

Sprained Ankle

The ankle joint is the connection point for the tibia, fibula, and talus bones. The bones within the ankle joint are held together by strong fibrous elastic structures called ligaments. They prevent the ankle joint from rolling, twisting, or turning too far to either side while standing, walking, and running. But, when the ligament is forced to stretch too far beyond its normal elasticity, a sprain occurs. The most commonly injured ankle ligament is the anterior talofibular ligament.

A severe sprain can result in the ligament being stretched to the point it tears.

 

Like strains, all sprains are graded based on the degree of stretching and tearing that occurs:

Grade I - the stretching or microscopic tearing of the ligament fibers. The joint retains normal function.

Grade II - partial tearing of the ligament fibers that results in the joint become lax and weak.

Grade III - significant to complete tearing of the ligament fibers. The joint is highly unstable and weak, often to the point that weight cannot be applied on the affected foot. The ankle will usually be swollen, tender, bruised, warm to the touch, and very painful.

Torn Knee Cartilage

Menisci knee injuries are usually referred to in layman’s terms as torn knee cartilage. Menisci are rubbery crescent-shaped cartilaginous tissue pads found on the ends of bones within certain joints. They act like cushions on the ends of the bones. In the knee, the lateral meniscus is along the outside of the knee and the medical meniscus is along the inside of the knee. Since the medical meniscus is attached to the medial collateral ligament (MCL), its less free to move and is more prone to injury.

The menisci can be torn when the knee is twisted too far to the side during a direct hit to the side of the knee -or- when a rugby player is running and suddenly cuts, pivots, or turns. The menisci may also suffer degenerative tearing from overuse of the knee during the repetitive running, bending, and squatting movements common to rugby.

The general symptoms of torn knee cartilage include:

* localized swelling, warmth, redness, tenderness, and possible bruising
* the knee may feel stiff or lockup
* pain may be most intense when the knee is twisted or rotated
* a popping sensation may be audible if the torn fragments catch between the tibia and femur as the knee is moved
* it may be difficult to fully straighten the knee

These are just a few of the most common injuries a rugby player faces. Other injuries common to the sport of rugby include: cauliflower ear; ACL, MCL, LCL injuries; contusions; shoulder dislocations; rotator cuff and AC joint injuries; tendinitis; bursitis; and finger fractures and sprains.

Products

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Acute Sinew Liniment

Acute Stage Treatment: Rub on the injured area when swelling and/or inflammation are present.

Quickly relieves pain, reduces swelling and inflammation, and breaks up clotted blood and stagnant fluids in the injured area. Stimulates circulation of blood and fluids to help cells quickly repair damaged tissues, providing rapid pain relief and faster healing. Sinew Herbal Ice can be used in-between applications.
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Our price: $39.95
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Chronic Sinew Liniment

Chronic Stage Treatment: Rub on the injured area when swelling and inflammation are gone, but you still feel pain, stiffness, weakness or sensitivity in cold and damp weather.

Strongly stimulates circulation to damaged tissues and promotes the healing of overstretched tendons, ligaments and muscles, thereby quickly relieving pain, stiffness and weakness. Sinew Injury Poultice, Sinew Relaxing Soak, and the Sinew Warming Soak can be used in-between applications.
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Sinew Herbal Ice

Acute Stage Treatment: Apply on the injured area when swelling and/or inflammation are present.

This first-aid ice alternative poultice (balm) is used in place of ice to significantly speed up the recovery and healing process. Reduces redness, swelling, and inflammation while dispersing accumulated blood and fluids to help restore normal circulation to the injured area. It reduces the swelling and inflammation more effectively than ice, allowing you to more quickly regain normal range of motion. Acute Sinew Liniment can be used in-between applications.
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Sinew Injury Poultice

Chronic Stage Treatment: Apply on the injured area when swelling and inflammation are gone, but you still feel pain, stiffness, weakness or sensitivity in cold and damp weather.

This poultice (balm) is particularly useful if your injured area is more painful in cold and damp weather. It significantly stimulates circulation to damaged tissues and further promotes the healing of overstretched tendons, ligaments and muscles. Chronic Sinew Liniment, Sinew Relaxing Soak and the Sinew Warming Soak can be used in-between applications.
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Our price: $37.95
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Sinew Relaxing Soak

Chronic Stage Treatment: Used to soak the injured area when swelling and inflammation are gone, but you still feel pain, stiffness, weakness or sensitivity in cold and damp weather. If the injured area is too large or in an area that can’t be submerged in a pot of water, you can also saturate a towel in the liquid and apply it to the injured area.

This soak is particularly useful if you feel restricted mobility in your injured area. It is used to relax muscles, tendons and ligaments that are in spasm to reduce pain and stiffness and improve range of motion. Chronic Sinew Liniment, Sinew Injury Poultice and the Sinew Warming Soak can be used in-between applications.
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Sinew Sports Massage Oil

This specially formulated massage oil is recommended for use before and after exercise, sports and strenuous activity. It penetrates deep into muscle layers to warm and stimulate muscles, increase circulation and relieve tightness, hence improving your performance and helping to prevent injury.
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Sinew Warming Soak

Chronic Stage Treatment: Used to soak the injured area when swelling and inflammation are gone, but you still feel pain, stiffness, weakness or sensitivity in cold and damp weather. If the injured area is too large or in an area that can’t be submerged in a pot of water, you can also saturate a towel in the liquid and apply it to the injured area.

This soak is particularly useful if your injured area is more painful and sensitive to cold or hurts more in cold weather. It is used to bring warmth into the injured area to drive coldness out of damaged tissues and increase local circulation, thereby relieving pain and stiffness in cold weather. Chronic Sinew Liniment, Sinew Injury Poultice and the Sinew Relaxing Soak can be used in-between applications.
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Our price: $23.95
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