RECOMMENDED DRILLS BY ADELAIDE DODGEBALL
To unload your shoulder and improve your throw:
To increase the stability of your shoulder:
Theraband/Theratube Rotator Cuff Exercise
To improve your abs for throwing
Twisted sit ups
WHERE TO GO IF YOU ARE INJURED
In an emergency:
Call 000 and get an ambulance to the nearest hospital.
If you have health insurance or you can afford private care:
Sportsmed SA has branches all over Adelaide and offers emergency sports medicine casualty at the Stepney Branch (call 8362 8111). Plus there are great physios (call 8130 1222).
Wakefield Sports Clinic in Wakefield Street is another option. See their website to book.
If you are broke:
You can try the Physio School clinics which are open during Uni term times and charge around $10 per visit. Call 8302 2541.
Recommendations from Susan Everett, Co-founding Physiotherapist and Current Practitioner at SPORTSMED, Stepney SA
DODGEBALL AND YOUR BODY
Dodgeball is a tough game. It’s a physical one. It’s unusual. You are keen to get going. But wait a minute. Your body might not be as ready as you think. If you haven’t been doing much exercise lately or you spend a lot of time driving a desk then your body will find Dodgeball challenging.
So here are the warnings and some suggestions to keep you playing pain free. If you feel that you are at risk or want to be less likely to get injured and play better seek some advice from a Sports Physiotherapist.
Rule 1: Do an Active Warm Up
Get your body and mind warmed up before you start playing. Do some jogging, changes of direction, backward running, jumping, lunges, gentle throws in all directions at a target and some upper body side bends and twists. Be warm and have your mind focused on the task ahead. Be hydrated and be wearing the right cross training shoes and knee pads
Rule 2: Start Slowly
Some of the injuries occur when you get too enthusiastic and competitive and go too hard, too fast, too soon. Your brain is not ‘Dodgeball smart’ yet. And your body needs time to strengthen the areas that work the hardest and get the hang of all the tricky movements that the sport requires.
Rule 3: Be Consistent
Play regularly so you can build Dodgeball resilience and skill and remember to decrease the vigour of your playing when you come back after a break
Risk 1: Shoulders
Dodgeball is different to other throwing sports as the direction of the throw and the position of the body varies hugely So give your brain time to train your shoulder skills to master these tricky throws. If you have dislocated your shoulder in the past or recently had shoulder surgery then Dodgeball is probably not for you!
Risk 2: Elbows
The under arm or sliced throw really loads up the inside of your elbow and the tendons there won’t like it if you go too hard too soon. So pace yourself.
Risk 3: Broken Arm
Very rarely you can even break your upper arm if you overload and throw too much, too hard, too soon especially when fatigued. Your bones will strengthen if you gradually increase the number and speed of the throws but it can take a few months.
The danger is the combination of the number and speed of the throws. So start throwing slower, try and estimate the number of throws per game and keep it under 60 per game for the first season while working on your accuracy. If you are feeling tired or achy in your arm or around your shoulder blade or your accuracy is off then it’s a message that you need to back off NOW! Having better control and strength around your shoulder blade and core will also help support you upper limb .
Warning from Adelaide Dodgeball: If you have increasing intense pain in your arm - we suggest you seek Professional Advice as soon as you can. If your doctor finds a hairline fracture in your arm we ask that you cease playing Dodgeball immediately - as these will greatly increase your chances of getting a Spiral Fracture of the arm.
Risk 4: Lower Limb Injuries
These include sprained ankles or busted ligaments in your knees which can happen if you have had previous injuries to these areas or do an awkward movement. So strap or brace your ankles if they are on the wobbly side and take care if you know that your knees are not stable!
Working on agility training and good form on bent knee activities will decrease the likelihood of injuring these areas.
Risk 5: Sore Kneecaps and kneebones
If you are continually dropping onto your knees you will stir up your knees especially if they do not track straight. So wear good quality kneepads and check that your knees aren’t falling inwards when you lunge.
Risk 6: Concussion
If you get hit in the head by the ball or another player or fall heavily and hit your head you may get a concussion which is not good! People around you will know if this has occurred if you are out cold of course! But brain damage can still occur if you are wobbly on your feet when you get up, your speech is slurred, you seem muddled, you have a headache, nausea, blurred vision, dizziness, neck pain, are overly sensitive to noise or light or seem odd. Take these signs seriously and stop playing, see a doctor immediately and do not drive.
Risk 7: The rest of your body
Because Dodgeball uses so much of your body (which is why it’s so great!) you may get back pain, hip pain or blows to your ego when you miss an important throw!
Remember to listen to your body, stop if pain seems new, severe or your body does not feel right. Seek care by sports medicine staff who can get you back on track.
After your game...
Remember to rehydrate with water or a sports drink and eat some carbs within 30 minutes to start the recovery process. Keep warm and keep moving for a while to flush out the toxins from all that activity!
If you really want to get the best out of your body and enhance your performance then you may want to book an appointment to see Susan Everett at Sportsmed, Stepney SA (Phone 08 8362 8122). She has a special interest in high performance sport and has been a physiotherapist at 3 Olympic games and is fascinated by complex or annoying injuries.