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Is Padel Bad for Knees? A Guide

For many, the thrill of a padel court is unparalleled. But as with all ball and racket sports, there are underlying questions, especially when it comes to injuries. “Is padel bad for knees?” is a query echoed by both casual game enthusiasts and professional players.

Delving into this, we’ll uncover not just knee injuries but also the spectrum of common padel injuries from ankle strains to the notorious tennis elbow.

While tennis injuries and those in padel have their differences, they share striking similarities, and knowing them is crucial for every paddle tennis player.

So, whether you’re a seasoned padel tennis veteran or just starting with side-to-side movements on the padel court, join us in exploring the most common, prevalent, and frequent injuries and how best to avoid them.

A prevalent knee injury in padel tennis is patellar tendinopathy, commonly known as “jumper’s knee.” This condition arises due to the repetitive jumps and side-to-side movements inherent in the sport.

Players frequently subject their knees to quick stops, starts, and directional changes, making them susceptible to this injury. Jumper’s knee is more frequently observed in male athletes, with males being two to four times more likely to develop this condition compared to females.

Symptoms of patellar tendinopathy include localized pain around the inferior pole of the patella and load-related discomfort, aggravated by activities like jumping, landing, cutting, and pivoting.

Valgus stress, whether through contact or non-contact mechanisms, can lead to MCL injury in padel players.

This injury can affect both male and female players. Additionally, female players are more susceptible to chondromalacia patella, a knee pathology caused by continuous friction between the patella and femur.

While these knee injuries are prevalent in padel, the exact risk factors and causes remain unclear.

Factors such as impaired anatomical morphology and altered dynamic neuromuscular function can contribute to anterior knee pain with overuse.

Regular participation in padel can lead to repetitive stress on the anterior knee, resulting in pain.

a man touching his knee

Preventing Knee Injuries

Strengthening the Quadriceps

One effective method to prevent knee injuries is to strengthen the quadriceps, the front thigh muscles that provide knee stability.

Incorporate exercises like squats, lunges, and leg raises into your routine to build muscle strength in this area.

Avoiding Accidental Injuries

Accidental injuries are inevitable in fast-paced sports like padel, but you can reduce the risk by following these steps:

  • Clear the Court: Ensure there are no padel balls on the court before playing a point.

  • Racket Preparation: Keep your racket ready to react swiftly to incoming balls.

  • Positioning: Focus on positioning to avoid accidents, especially when your opponent is preparing for a smash.

Effective communication with your partner is crucial in preventing accidental injuries during the game.


a woman holding a padel racket and her ankle

Preventing Excessive Injuries

Excessive injuries often occur when players push their limits for extended periods, such as playing for several hours or training intensely every day. To avoid burnout and overuse injuries:

  • Plan Your Play: Determine the duration of your play session beforehand.

  • Proper Nutrition: Maintain a balanced diet to support your physical performance.

  • Stretching: Include stretching exercises in your routine to improve flexibility.

  • Take Breaks: Allow for regular breaks to rest and recover.

Adopt the 80/20 rule, where 20% of your training is high-intensity, and the remaining 80% is low-intensity to reduce the risk of excessive injuries.


preventing excessive injuries

Why Proper Warm-Up Matters in Padel

In the thrilling world of padel, where agility and quick movements reign supreme, one aspect often overlooked but crucial is warming up.

Neglecting this essential step can open the door to unwelcome guests: muscle strains and tears. So, let’s delve into why warming up properly is a game-changer, focusing on those keywords you’re keen to explore.

Before stepping onto the padel court, consider incorporating a brief run or jog into your routine.

This simple act can do wonders for your performance, preparing your body for the intense action ahead.

Paying particular attention to warming up your leg muscles is vital, especially when you consider that most injuries in padel aim for the lower limbs, with a special liking for the hamstrings.

A proper leg-focused warm-up can reduce the risk of these injuries significantly.

Now, here’s a staggering fact: over 62% of sports injuries rear their head during training and practice sessions. This statistic underscores the critical nature of proper warm-up routines.

It’s not just about elevating your game; it’s about safeguarding your body from unnecessary wear and tear.

So, the next time you step onto the padel court, remember that your warm-up isn’t just a ritual—it’s your shield against injuries, your ticket to peak performance, and your assurance of a great game.


a woman running

The Comprehensive Guide to Padel Injuries

Padel, the exciting hybrid of tennis and squash, has become a sensation in the world of ball and racket sports.

Yet, with its rapid growth in popularity, questions about common padel injuries, tennis injuries, and how to prevent them have emerged.

In this all-encompassing blog post, we’re diving deep into the realm of padel injuries, addressing shoulder injuries, tennis elbow, and the surprising fact that the majority of injuries occur in the lower limbs.

A study conducted in 2019 meticulously examined the distribution of injuries within the world of padel, revealing a captivating breakdown:

  • Lower Limbs (41%)

  • Torso (13%)

  • Upper Limbs (34%)

  • Head and Neck (12%)

While tennis elbow often takes the spotlight, what truly grabs attention is the cumulative number of knee and ankle injuries, surpassing those in the lower limbs.

This compelling data emphasizes the necessity of prioritizing lower body care, from proper warm-up routines to well-deserved rest days.


a woman touching her neck

The Verdict

Sports injuries happen, and this includes padel tennis. Whether you’re a seasoned paddle tennis player or just getting started, safety should always be a top priority.

While knee injuries are a significant concern, don’t overlook other common injuries like tennis elbow, ankle issues, and muscle soreness.

To continue enjoying padel tennis while minimizing the risk of injuries, players should adopt preventive measures like proper warm-up and cool-down routines, strengthening exercises, and correct techniques.

Additionally, strategies such as selecting the right padel racket and seeking appropriate treatment when needed can further enhance your safety on the court.

So, remember, while padel tennis is an exciting sport enjoyed by many, it’s essential to take proactive steps to protect yourself and ensure a long-lasting and injury-free experience.

FAQs

While playing padel, paddle tennis players often encounter a range of injuries. Some of the most common padel injuries include tennis elbow injuries, injuries affecting the shoulder muscles, and issues related to calf muscles. Lateral epicondylitis (often referred to as tennis elbow) is especially prevalent. Additionally, due to the game’s repetitive movements, muscle imbalances can occur, leading to further complications.

Yes, padel is considered a safe sport, especially when players maintain proper technique and follow preventive strategies. However, like in any other sport, there’s potential for injuries. Physical agility, proper warm-up routines, and strength training can further reduce the risk. Eating properly also aids in muscle recovery and overall well-being, ensuring longer, safer play sessions.

Tennis, particularly when played on hard courts, can be hard on the knees due to the intense rallies and quick displacement movements. While it doesn’t inherently “damage” the knees, improper technique, overuse, and lack of preventive care can increase the risk of injuries like tennis leg.

Injuries in padel range from tennis elbow to swollen ankles caused by repetitive side-to-side movements. Shoulder pain, muscle strains, and burnout lesions are also frequent injuries. The sport requires quick movements and physical agility, making ligament extension and muscle groups’ strain prevalent if not properly trained.

It’s subjective and varies based on criteria such as frequency, severity, or long-term impact. While padel has its risks, contact sports like American football, rugby, and ice hockey often have more severe injuries due to the physical nature of these games. However, when it comes to muscle and tendon issues, racket sports, including padel and tennis, rank higher. Each sport has its inherent risks, and comparing them might not yield a clear ‘worst’ due to the vast differences in gameplay and demands.

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