It is well known that staying active is highly beneficial for your body and mind, and playing sports can be a fun way to do that. However, as with any physical activity, there are risks of injury. Whether you play recreationally or are an athlete it is important to be aware of the most common sports injuries.\nCheck out our infographic to get to know the symptoms, treatment, and most importantly, prevention of these injuries.\n\nAnkle Sprain\nLateral ankle sprain causes and symptoms\nLateral ankle sprains are caused by the stretching or tearing of ligaments on the outside of the ankle. This can occur in an accidental movement that forces the ankle to turn under and the sole of the foot inward.\nSymptoms of lateral ankle sprains include pain, swelling, bruising, tenderness and warmth to the touch, and pain on the lateral (outside) portion of the ankle.\nMedial ankle sprain causes and symptoms\nMedial ankle sprains occur when ligaments that hold the ankle in place overstretch or tear.\nSymptoms of medial ankle sprains include pain, swelling, bruising, tenderness and warmth to the touch, and pain on the medial (inside) portion of the ankle.\nHigh ankle sprain causes and symptoms\nHigh ankle sprains are caused by a stretch or tear of the ligament or fibrous tissue that holds the two lower leg bones together, just above the ankle joint. This can happen when the foot is jammed upwards and the bones are forced apart.\nSymptoms of a high ankle sprain include pain, swelling, bruising, tenderness and warmth to the touch, with pain located just above the ankle, between the two leg bones.\nAnkle sprain treatment\n\nR.I.C.E. – Rest, ice, compression, elevation for 24 to 48 hours after surgery and immobilization.\n\nAnkle sprain prevention\n\nWear shoes specific to your sport\nPerform strengthening exercises during therapy – and off-seasons\nUse tape or brace for added stability\nAvoid running on uneven surfaces.\n\nGroin Pull or Hamstring Strain\nHamstring strain cause\nMuscle pulls occur when an athlete stretches the musculature beyond its normal limit. Groin strains typically occur during a lateral movement, particularly during a quick cut to the side while running. Hamstring (the back of the thigh) and quadriceps (the front of the thigh) strains typically occur during sudden accelerations or decelerations while running.\nHamstring strain symptoms\nSymptoms of hamstring strains and grain pulls include:\n\nPain or tenderness\nSwelling and bruising\nStiffness\nPopping or snapping sensation\n\nHamstring strain treatment\nTreatment options for groin pulls and hamstring strains include:\n\nIce, heat, electronic stimulation, or ultrasound.\nA compression wrap or compression shorts may be used to alleviate discomfort.\n\nHamstring strain prevention\nMaintaining good flexibility and muscle strength through daily stretching, regular strength training, and a dynamic warm-up\nShin splints\nShin splint causes\nMedial tibial stress syndrome (MTSS) – or shin splints – takes place when too much stress or force is placed on the tibia and surrounding anatomy. Causes of shin splints include:\n\nStarting exercise too quickly\nProblems with the arch of your foot\nMuscular imbalances in your lower leg\nRunning on hard and\/or inclined surfaces\nInadequate shoes\n\nShin splint symptoms\nSymptoms of shin splints may include pain before, during, and\/or after activity and tenderness to the touch, usually on the inside of the shin\nShin splint treatment\nBiggest component for treating shin splints is rest. If you can\u2019t stop exercising, try icing to reduce inflammation. Other treatment options include:\n\nCompression therapy\nKinesio tape\nShock-absorbing insoles\nStretching and strengthening lower leg muscles\nIncorporating cross-training exercises into your regimen.\n\nShin splint prevention\nYou may be able to prevent shin splints if you gradually increase duration, frequency, and intensity of runs. Purchase quality running shoes and use shock-absorbing insoles if necessary.\nACL Tear or Injury\nACL tear causes\nThe anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) keeps the knee stable. The ACL may tear suddenly and without warning when an individual decelerates, cuts to the side, or lands awkwardly. When the ACL tears and that restraint disappears, the knee becomes unstable and may unpredictably buckle or give way. An ACL tear is a common knee injury in football and basketball.\nACL tear symptoms\nSymptoms of ACL tears or injuries include an audible \u201cpop\u201d at the moment of injury, and the slippage of the knee out of its joint, accompanied by severe swelling and painful movement.\nACL tear treatment\nIf a patient\u2019s goal is to continue an active lifestyle, surgery may be the treatment of choice because a torn ACL does not heal on its own. Nonsurgical treatment options include protective bracing and muscle strengthening exercises.\nACL tear prevention\nCurrent prevention programs focus on proper nerve and muscle control of the knee through plyometrics, balance, and strengthening and stability exercises for the lower limbs\nPatellofemoral syndrome\nPatellofemoral syndrome causes\nWhen the kneecap is overloaded due to overuse or poor alignment, the patellofemoral syndrome may occur. High impact sports like football, basketball, soccer, tennis, and running can cause aggravation.\nPatellofemoral syndrome symptoms\nA common symptom of patellofemoral syndrome is a dull ache underneath the kneecap while walking down stairs, squatting, or getting up after long periods of time. You may also feel a painful grating or creaking sensation.\nPatellofemoral syndrome treatment\nConsider resting and staying away from activities that cause pain. Ice and anti-inflammatory drugs can help treat swelling and pain. Knee braces and sleeves can provide support. In some cases, surgery may be required to realign the kneecap.\nPatellofemoral syndrome prevention\nIt may not be possible to totally prevent the development of patellofemoral pain syndrome; however, there are steps you can take to reduce your risk and avoid making the syndrome worse.\nThese measures include:\n\nProper warming up before exercising as well as stretching pre- and post-activity\nVarying the types of activities that you participate in, such as alternating between running and swimming\nTaking care of injuries immediately, which includes obtaining adequate first aid as well as resting the injury until it is healed before resuming an activity\n\nTennis elbow\nTennis elbow causes\nCauses of tennis elbow may include inflammation or degeneration of the tendons on the outside of the forearm. This is caused by repetitive motions such as hitting a backhand in tennis, raking leaves, or constant typing on the computer.\nTennis elbow symptoms\nA common symptom of tennis elbow is a burning pain on the outside of the elbow that most often starts mildly and becomes constant over time. The patient will have tenderness to the touch on the outside of the elbow.\nTennis elbow treatment\nTo treat tennis elbow, you should rest, stretch, and ice the injured area. The doctor may prescribe physical therapy and may give a cortisone injection.\nTennis elbow prevention\nGaining adequate strength, utilizing a stretching routine for the forearms, and using proper techniques will help to prevent tennis elbow.\nColles Fracture\nColles fracture is the most frequent type of wrist fracture.\nColles fracture causes\nA colles fracture occurs when a patient falls on an outstretched hand.\nColles fracture symptoms\nSymptoms of a colles fracture include pain when flexing wrist, usually accompanied by tenderness, swelling, and bruising over injury site.\nColles fracture treatment\nThe doctor will place the wrist in a splint or cast for 4-6 weeks. Following the cast, the patient will perform a number of range-of-motion and forearm strengthening exercises. Surgery may be required if the bone does not heal correctly.\nColles fracture prevention\nwrist guards during activities where falling on an outstretched hand is a high possibility may help to prevent a colles fracture.