Foot and Ankle Injuries
With the growing popularity of pickleball, many sports related injuries are putting players in quite the pickle. Oddly enough, most of these injuries are taking place in the feet and ankles. According to the USAPA (USA Pickleball Association), 70% of the participants playing pickleball are over the age of 60. That’s a lot of seniors out there enjoying this exciting sport, but that also means that there are more injuries needing medical attention.
What is Pickleball?
Pickleball has been around since 1965, when a congressman and his friends invented the sport for the benefit of his bored family members. They couldn’t find their traditional badminton racquets, so they improvised with table tennis paddles and a net.
Today, pickleball is played on a 20×44 feet court, with the net hung at 36 inches on the ends. The ball is very similar to a wiffle ball, and the sport is a combination of badminton and tennis. Just because there is a smaller court, doesn’t mean that it’s an easy activity by any means. It can be very strenuous and tough on the joints.
Some of the main injuries from this sport are in the lower half of the body. To name a few, these are the foot related issues that seem to have a common incidence rate in people playing pickleball:
• Plantar fasciitis
• Ankle Sprains & Strains
• Foot Arthritis Exacerbation
• Achilles Tendon Strain
• Heel Bruising
• Bone Fractures
At Collier Podiatry, Dr. Michael Petrocelli has been practicing podiatric medicine for well over 20 years. He is an expert in his field and a leader to his peers. Ironically, he and his staff see a great deal of pickleball injuries in the Naples area.
Collier Podiatry is familiar with the common foot injuries related to this popular sport. Although, there are many options when treating individual needs, the two most common forms of treatment for pickleball injuries are Deep Tissue Laser Therapy and Stabilization.
Deep tissue laser therapy uses a process called photobiomodulation, which penetrates deep into the muscles tissues using photon energy. This therapy increases cellular metabolism, while decreasing inflammation and pain.
Collier podiatry sees great results in their patient’s foot health with this treatment option. The best part is that there are no side effects, no harmful medications and more importantly, long lasting results.
The second of the two mentioned treatment options is Stabilization. This option is achieved through a device such as a brace or foot support, which technically is ankle-foot-orthoses or AFO.
There are many medical supply options that your podiatrists can prescribe, such as ankle braces, high top orthotic shoes, lace up supports and shoes made with a medial-lateral supportive base. There is of course a more permanent stabilization option, which includes surgery of the foot and ankle, but not all patients need this. It’s important to be evaluated by an experienced podiatric professional if you’re experiencing any type of foot pain.
Along with these treatment options, Collier Podiatry will provide you with personalized instructions on the necessary amount of rest, stretching exercises and home care to get you back to doing what you love—playing pickleball!
Dr. Michael Petrocelli has been practicing podiatric medicine for well over 20 years. He is an expert in his field and a leader to his peers. If you are experiencing any foot pain or foot conditions, please contact Collier Podiatry at (239) 775-0019, or visit their website at www.collierpdiatry.com
Their kind and well-trained staff are ready to answer your questions and concerns and get you back on your feet again.
Dr. Petrocelli is certified by the American Board of Wound Management. He is also the staff Podiatrist at Naples Community Hospital Wound Healing Center.
Collier Podiatry, P.A.
Michael J. Petrocelli
D.P.M., F.A.C.A.S., C.W.S.P.