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What are Some Common Injuries Among Footballers?


Orthopaedics (Joints & Trauma)

14 October, 2021


Injuries in contact sports, such as football, are common. Some injuries are mild, while others are severe and may cause serious complications and long-term debility. The injuries may be acute, due to falling or sudden change in direction while running, or due to overuse. 

Common Injuries in Football Players

There is a significant risk of injuries among football players. Following are some of the common injuries that footballers may encounter:

  • Muscle strain: Muscle strains or pulled muscles are common among football players, and commonly affect the hamstring muscles and the calf muscles. 

  • Knee ligament injuries: These may be due to a direct impact on the knees or a sudden change in direction during movement.

  • Ankle sprains: Ankle sprains commonly occur due to sudden, uncontrolled inversion of the foot while running or during a tackle. Playing with a severe ankle sprain may worsen the condition and delay its recovery. Find the best ortho hospital in India for anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction surgery in Bangalore at Manipal Hospital, Old Airport Road, Bangalore.

  • Shoulder injuries: Football players are also prone to shoulder injuries, most of which are due to a fall with significant impact. Common shoulder injuries include dislocations and tears of the rotator cuff muscles. Looking for shoulder dislocation treatment in Bangalore, consult Manipal Hospital and ask any questions you have related to your injury.

  • Concussions: Concussions may occur when there is a direct hit on the skull. It may also occur due to an indirect impact when there is a sudden jerk in the head. The player may experience headaches, nausea, dizziness, drowsiness, and loss of balance due to concussions.

  • Heat injuries: These injuries are caused due to excessive depletion of water and salt. It usually occurs in young footballers. It results in muscle cramps and is managed through fluid and electrolyte replacement. 

  • Overuse injuries: Overuse injuries occur due to accumulated strain on the tissues which occur following repetitive impact. Inadequate warm-up, suboptimal playing surfaces, worn-out footwear, faulty technique, and overtraining contribute to overuse injuries.  Classic examples of overuse injuries are Metatarsal stress fractures of the foot and shin splints of the leg which may need prolonged recovery time.

  • Wrist and hand injuries: The player may have wrist sprains while taking the support of their palm during a fall. Goalkeepers may have Finger fractures due to impact or Wrist tendonitis due to overuse of the wrists. 

  • Achilles tendonitis: Players with Achilles tendonitis feel pain in the back of their ankle. The condition is usually due to overuse. If left untreated, it may result in rupture of the Achilles tendon. 


Footballers are at high risk for injuries, ranging from mild to severe, during training and playing. The common injuries include wrist and hand injuries, ankle injuries, concussions, shin splints, ligament injuries, and muscle strains. Sports medicine plays an important role in preventing injuries and rehabilitation, maintaining form, physical fitness, and promoting overall good health in sportsmen. 

Manipal Hospital has the best sports medicine specialist in India, experienced in treating any kind of injury. For rehabilitation treatment in Bangalore consult the best sports injury hospital near you.


Why football players are prone to injuries?

Football is a highly demanding sport in terms of stamina and performance. Football players are prone to injuries because of being in continuous contact with other players (contact sport), a sudden change in direction while running, muscle overuse, and risk of fall with high impact. 

How to avoid injuries while playing football?

The players can avoid the injuries through:

  • Incorporating stretching and strengthening exercises during training

  • Proper warm-up before playing

  • Wearing protective gear

  • Maintaining sufficient hydration

What would happen if an injured player continues to play football?

A few injuries are mild and heal themselves without any medical intervention. These injuries do not have any long-lasting impact on the player. However, most injuries can potentially affect a footballer’s performance and require treatment. Continuing to play with such injuries without treatment may worsen the condition and cause permanent impairment of performance and could even end a footballer’s career.



Consultant – Orthopaedic Surgery, Sports Medicine 

Dr. Hemant K Kalyan

HOD & Consultant - Orthopaedic Surgery, Sports Medicine

Old Airport Road - Bengaluru

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