Soft tissue injury

Soft tissue injury is an injury to any of the soft tissues of the body. Soft tissue injury may occur in the muscle as in a contusion or strain, in the tendons as in a strain or tendinopathy, in fascia connective tissue as in a fasciitis or the ligaments as in a sprain or the joint bursae as in bursitis.

Athletes are very prone to soft tissue injuries because they put repeated pressure on their joints. When excessive force is applied to a joint, ligaments can become torn and sprain results. Strains, often called “pulled muscles” can also occur from overexertion.

Soft tissue injury is painful and requires physiotherapy intervention. It is important to rest the part and give it time to heal. Athletes are often reluctant to do this and continue to train despite pain and injury. This is unwise, as the injury can be exacerbated and take a longer time to heal.

As with most injuries, you should see your health professional as soon as possible. You may be prescribed anti-inflammatory medication to reduce pain and inflammation and promote healing. You may also be required to have an X-ray to determine if there is any associated fracture or dislocation with the soft tissue injury. Severe sprains and strains where there is a complete rupture may require surgical correction. Physiotherapy is very beneficial for soft tissue injury management.

We will conduct an evaluation which would involve getting your medical history, prior level of activity, mechanism of injury and your goals for post-recovery. The physical examination will include an assessment of range-of-motion, strength, posture and biomechanics.

Physiotherapy will focus on pain management and regaining full function with the use of any number of techniques including soft tissue massage, passive stretching and joint mobilisation exercises, ice, ultrasound, acupuncture, applying compression bandages or taping the area with strapping tape and a graduated strengthening exercise programme to help you return to full sport and prevent re-injury.

We are trained to help you get the most out of your sport and to minimise the risks of injury.