WAG Fewer injuries in gymnasts who begin at a later age?

cmg

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Could some injuries also be part of just how a gymnast is put together? By that I mean are their hips straight, do they have hyper flexibility, do they land straight due to balanced knee alignment? I am a runner and you will see the top runners are all extremely efficient and are very smooth when they run. Top runners usually have naturally perfect form in that they do not pronate when they land with their foot in or out, their hips are level, etc. My legs are not aligned properly (when I was a kid I wore braces to straighten them) and I land on the outside of my foot. This action puts a lot of strain on my knees and I used to get extreme tendonitis when I ran indoor track. I got injured a lot high school and college. I think they have a lot more PT remedies now than they had when I started. I also got into track very quickly and did not have a proper base before I started doing higher mileage and faster workouts. It doesn't mean if you don't have a runner body or gymnast body you can't do the sport or be exceptionally good at it, it just means you have to be a lot more careful on how you train, how much you train, and perhaps have a very strong conditioning/PT program that helps improve your weaknesses. Most club teams do not have access to this type of expertise. I know this might seem harsh in the sense of who gets to be the best and hard work may not always get you to where you want, but unfortunately sports is pretty brutal when it comes to selecting who gets to be the best.
 

Sk8ermaiden

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Could some injuries also be part of just how a gymnast is put together? By that I mean are their hips straight, do they have hyper flexibility, do they land straight due to balanced knee alignment?
Oh for sure. My daughter got spondy even at low hours and low impact. In putting some pieces together, her dad, uncle, and grandfather all had the same or similar issues at the same vertebrae, so there is definitely something genetic at play.
 
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HopeShantz

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Apr 3, 2021
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I can say my daughter started at 5 in preteam and her friend joined a year later at 8/9, they did the same practice and hours - her friend has constant problems with her knees, and my daughters wrists hurt while vaulting while her her ankles are constantly rolling. Earlier..later... hasn’t seemed to help
Something to help with her wrists not hurting as much are Tiger Paws, they make your wrists sturdier which will give them less pain.
 
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ReluctantGymMom

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Something to help with her wrists not hurting as much are Tiger Paws, they make your wrists sturdier which will give them less pain.
Yep she vaults and tumbles with tiger paws, she doesn’t have pain with them on but it seems like a bandaid
 

Sk8ermaiden

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Yep she vaults and tumbles with tiger paws, she doesn’t have pain with them on but it seems like a bandaid
I can't remember where I heard or read it (probably here), but I once heard someone say their coach didn't like tiger paws because a gymnast would become reliant on them and not strengthen the muscles or whatever. And the response was that these are not things the human body is designed for. Our wrists are not supposed to take these impacts, especially at this frequency. Anything that helps protect it is a good thing.
 

JessSyd

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I can't remember where I heard or read it (probably here), but I once heard someone say their coach didn't like tiger paws because a gymnast would become reliant on them and not strengthen the muscles or whatever. And the response was that these are not things the human body is designed for. Our wrists are not supposed to take these impacts, especially at this frequency. Anything that helps protect it is a good thing.

My daughter’s physiotherapist says that wrists are not designed for tumbling and any extra support is good support. She said that it is not an issue of strength so much as repeated impact and load going through what is a relatively small joint.
 

JessSyd

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Actually on that note....does anyone know of something like tiger paws but for ankles? And in kids sizes? I will ask my daughter’s physio next time we see her, but I would be keen to hear what has worked for other gymnasts.

My daughter’s ankles are not injured, but she is having some trouble with load, especially now that she is flipping on beam. Strapping helps, but we only get a month or so out of any given brand of tape before she starts to react to the adhesive.