Female patient visiting her physiatrist.

Tabletop Sports Injuries — You Got Hurt Playing What?

If you have been injured playing ping pong, pool or billiards, you may be suffering a bit of humiliation along with your physical pain. While injuries incurred playing rough and tumble sports are generally considered evidence of athletic devotion and prowess, injuries suffered during a tabletop sport are more likely to be a source of amusement to those around you.

Fear not. At Long Island Spine Rehabilitation Medicine, we are physiatrists, focusing on diagnosing and treating your injury, not rating its cause for bravery. We are well aware that pain — whatever its cause — interferes with your life. That’s why we are dedicated to relieving pain with both traditional and complementary medical treatments and restoring you to full functionality. Contact us for efficient, effective, non-surgical remedies.

Ping Pong Injuries

Played competitively, ping pong is a fast-paced, intense sport, involving sudden, unexpected, often awkward movements that can easily put strain on both the upper and lower body. Sharp turns, rapid pivots, and extended reaches can put you off balance potentially resulting in:

  • Ankle strains and sprains

Sharp turns when you’re not well-balanced can cause your ankle to twist in a way it isn’t designed to do, causing an ankle strain (affecting a tendon) or ankle sprain (affecting the ligament). 

  • Knee injuries

Knee injuries are also common in a sport that involves sudden swivels and applied pressure to one leg. Ping pong players can suffer a wide variety of knee injuries, including sprains, strains, bursitis, dislocations, meniscus tears, or even fractures.

  • Calf strain

Just as your ankle and knee can be strained during ping pong, your calf is also at risk. Although you don’t cover a lot of ground, you may use your calf muscles excessively, especially if you don’t rest during hours of play. Just standing with tensed muscles, not to mention twisting and turning, puts you at risk for calf strain.

  • Tennis elbow (epicondylitis)

It isn’t surprising that you can get tennis elbow when playing ping pong — after all, the game is also known as “table tennis.” During play, it is common to overextend your arm or twist it peculiarly in order to save a shot. Alternating between forehand and backhand shots also gives your elbow a workout.

  • Shoulder injuries

Though the elbow is the most mobile joint when playing table tennis, if it is consistently stressed, your shoulder may suffer a sprain, strain, or bursitis.

Pool and Billiard Injuries

Though players of pool and billiards rarely work up a sweat, except due to tension, they can suffer painful injuries.

  • Back Injuries 

Pool and billiard players may suffer back injuries, including pinched nerves, sprains, strains, and herniated discs, because of all the bending involved in both games. Because these games are often played by older individuals, existing osteoarthritis may increase the risk of injury. In addition, the intense concentration required may cause players to tense their muscles, also increasing the likelihood of injury. 

  • Wrist or Finger Injuries

Hands, wrists, and fingers are in constant use during pool and billiard games, so injuries to tendons, ligaments, nerves, and bones are not uncommon. Because our hands are used for almost all tasks, such injuries, apart from being very painful, can greatly interfere with everyday activities. 

Contact Our Experienced Pain Management Doctors for Immediate Help

Fortunately, our five Long Island offices are staffed by talented doctors who can relieve your pain and get you back to the ping pong or pool table efficiently and effectively. Contact us now to discover the broad range of treatments we have available to make you more comfortable and restore you to maximum functionality, including:

The sooner you get in touch with us, the sooner you will feel back to yourself.