Self Treatment for Soft Tissue Injuries

Over the years we have written many articles for various sports publications such as the Sheffield and Hallamshire FA Soccer Scene Magazine (pictured below).  One of the most common requests we get is for tips on self treatment for simple injuries.  Check the text below if you get injured.

sports physio sheffield

For the best recovery from an injury, the first 72 hours, are vital. Looking after yourself can make the difference between early recovery, and a chronic niggle that can last months or even years!

Individuals of all age groups, of all levels of fitness, and who participate in all levels of physical activity, from everyday functional activities to international athletic competition, should benefit from adhering to the recommendations for management in the immediate (up to 72 hours) post-injury management.

Always Remember P.R.I.C.E. (Protection, Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation)

Protection is needed to protect the injured tissues from undue stress which may disrupt the healing process and delay rather than promote healing. Possibly the best form of protection is to stop playing, and use plaster cast, taping, bandaging, splints, slings, or crutches.

Rest is required to reduce the metabolic demands of the injured area, avoid increased blood flow, and to avoid placing undue stress on the injured tissues. It is ok for some general activity, but avoid any activity directly involving the injured area, or healing will be compromised. Don’t perform any movements which replicate the mechanism of the injury and movements which increase the pain. Although the injured structures should be rested during the early stages of the healing process, it is important to exercise adjacent structures.

Ice is used to limit the damage caused by the injury, by reducing the temperature of the tissues, limiting bleeding and reducing swelling. It may also reduce pain. Ice is best applied, in crushed form, wrapped in a damp towel for a period of 15-20 minutes every 2 hours. It is a good idea to check the skin condition every 5 minutes.

Compression is applied to limit the amount of swelling caused by the injury. Compression should be applied from distal areas to proximal. Eg for a knee injury, start the bandaging below the knee and finish it nearer the thigh. Elastic bandages and tubigrip are most effective. However they should not be worn when laying down or in association with elevation.

Elevation of the injured part lowers the pressure in local blood vessels and helps to limit the bleeding. You should aim to elevate the injured part above the level of the heart as much as possible during the first 72 hours following injury and ensure that the elevated part is adequately supported.

If a severe injury is suspected, the best course of action is always to go to A&E. Signs of severe injury include:

Details modified from the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy Guidelines.

If the guidelines help your sports injury, but don't completely settle it, and you feel you need to see a specialist physio, contact us on 0114 2390022. 



Running Physiotherapy




Thai Boxing Injury

"One important key to success is self-confidence. An important key to self-confidence is preparation."

Arthur Ashe