Austin (KXAN) — Pickleball has grown in popularity all over Austin over the past few years.
East Austin resident Drew Callahan plays pickleball regularly and has watched it grow.
“It’s sweeping the country and it’s getting huge,” he said.
As more people play sports, so do injuries.
According to USA Pickleball, it is estimated that 19,000 pickleball injuries This statistic has increased significantly over the last decade.
Callahan said her father fell while playing pickleball.
“The ball went over his head and he hit the wall directly,” he said. “I know he did pretty well.”
Across Austin, physical therapists are noticing an increasing number of patients suffering from pickleball pain.
David Romero is a physical therapist with the Texas Physical Therapy Specialist (Texas PTS). Common injuries include ankle sprains, knee and shoulder injuries, he said.
“Patients say they spend three, four, or five hours a day playing video games,” Romero said.
“Even if you’re just doing it a few times a week, you can actually start causing injuries if you’re overusing too many muscles.”
Romero recommends avoiding loose shoes such as flip-flops or sandals to avoid slipping or falling and injuring yourself.
He also advises people to take proactive steps to prevent pain. I mean dynamic warm-ups, not just static stretching.
“It’s a lower intensity, more sport-specific and relevant movement,” Romero said. “It’s to prepare my body for the game I’m going to play.”
Asked how he warmed up, Callahan admitted he could improve.
“Maybe five to 10 minutes of stretching and just a few quick rallies before heading off,” he said. “Probably that much, but there should be more.”
Unlike most sports, pickleball is played by all ages.
For Romero, this means the number of new injuries could rise over time.
“I’ve been through injuries like this all my life,” he said. “So, I would guess there will be quite a few of these popping up in the next few years as they grow in popularity.”
For more information on the Texas PTS and additional tips for avoiding accidents on pickleball courts, visit click here.
https://www.kxan.com/news/how-to-avoid-pickleball-injuries/ How to avoid pickleball injuries