Beating injuries and the buzzer – a glance at the 2015 Playoffs

The Playoffs have arrived and to date, been highlighted by some extreme buzzer beaters. No matter which team you support, the chances are you have probably seen at least one of the Piece, Paul, Rose or Lebron daggers. With that said, injuries have tarnished almost every head-to-head clash. Nobody likes to see anybody suffer from injuries, let alone let it influence games of the Playoffs as each team puts in it’s bid to make The Finals. Before the Playoffs even began it was upsetting to not include OKC as contenders, with Kevin Durant sidelined by his foot. It outlines what an intense game basketball can be, but more importantly how gruelling the 82-game NBA season is.

Serious injuries have already been noted to Kevin Love, Mike Conley, Chris Paul, Pau Gasol and John Wall, that have resulted in missed games. Mauresse Speights will miss today’s game with a calf strain and Kyrie Irving is battling an ongoing foot problem. Even Lebron James will do his best to shrug off an ankle injury sustained late in Game 4.
It’s a never ending battle to keep your roster healthy but it can be noted that by insuring the players are healthy and able to play, the medical staff put their organization in the best position to succeed. Only twice in the last nine seasons has the NBA champion finished outside the top-10 for fewest games missed and 63 percent of non-playoff teams finished below the league average for games missed during that same span.

Teams mange injury prevention in multiple ways and each push the boundaries further and further to develop and find new ways to recover and manage players individual load. There still is no secret recipe to load management, but we do know that load is crucial. The body’s structures like consistency and gradual build up. A general rule of thumb is less than 10% change across short periods of time. Sudden changes of periods where extreme overload or deloading takes place can place an athlete at higher risk of injury. As extensive as some software and GPS data that teams use gets, often nothing beats subjective questionairres (sleep, wellbeing and perception of effort). It may be a way you can simply monitor yourself across your own season. Ask yourself – How am I sleeping (duration and quality)? Out of 10 how do I feel? How hard did I work in that session out of 10? How long was that session for?

It’s an important thing to remember as junior athletes – keep your body in working order to help your team succeed. The more successful your team, it’s fair to say the more doors opened for you with opportunity.

“Stronger. Smarter. Safer”

 

Pic source =  Michael Tipton: flickr.com

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