How to Avoid 17% of All Sports Injuries
Are you at risk for a stress fracture?
A stress fracture is defined by the American College of Sports Medicine as an exercise related injury that causes a degree of strain on the bone. Stress fractures typically occur because of overuse. Bone adaptation, which is a response to bone repairing itself from micro-damage that can occur during physical activity, is an internal response to the over-exercising.
Stress fractures are common in the lower limbs, more specifically the metatarsal bone, or the area of space between the toes and ankle, and the heel of the foot.
There are many factors for stress fractures, some being inadequate nutrition, low bone mass and being female. The most common risk factors for stress fractures include:
- Change in training
- Low fitness
- Low muscle strength
The best way to avoid a stress fracture is to listen to your body when training, such as increasing weight gradually over a certain period of time, and not over-exerting your muscles. It is also recommended that areas typically under stress more often, be focused on in order to strengthen that muscle group. For example, be sure to train your lower back if you find yourself having difficulty executing a back squat.
Another way to avoid stress fractures is to eat an adequate amount of Vitamin D and calcium, a minimum of 1000 mg per day for age 19 and older, and 1300 mg per day for age 19 and younger.