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When football hurts

It does not matter if you are a girl or a boy, old or young --- Football is a sport for everyone. In some European countries, almost every school has a football team of their own. Football is a popular sport among teenagers, all of whom were probably inspired by their idols in the international football teams. Football's growing popularity is best exemplified by its “ambassador” --- David Beckham, a popular (and gorgeous!) football player whose advertisement billboards can be seen almost everywhere. He is like the looked upon as the “epitome” of a football player since he is the best there is. In England, for example, they have Manchester United as being the most popular football club there is, with almost 50 million supporters worldwide.

Football, also called as soccer, is a team sport wherein two teams go against each other to score a winning goal for their team. Eleven players are included in a team, and the sport is played in a rectangular grass field. The goalkeeper is one member of the team that guards their respective goal, and the only one who can use their hands or arms to prevent the ball from reaching the goal. All the other players use their feet in kicking the ball, and is also using their torso and head for mid air passes. Of course, in every physical game we play, there is always a possibility of having an injury within the team.

In football and in any other games that require physical strength, they are trained to do stretching and pre-game exercises, prior to playing the game. But in some cases, other players may not get to stretch certain parts of their bodies properly, and while during the game, they may be injured due several factors. Usual injuries in this kind of sport, or in any other physical sports include ankle sprains and strains, knee pain, lower back pain, elbow pain, shoulder injuries, and muscle spasms, among others. Ankle sprains or strains are often experienced when there is uneven terrain, or a poorly executed technique. The right footwear is essential in avoiding this, and a brace could also provide extra resistance. Knee pain during a football game can be caused by poor and improper technique, absence of conditioning and lack of flexibility. It is important to have suitable training to avoid overuse, and such aspects in bio-mechanics like flat feet or high arches give out more knee pain. In playing football, for example, knee pain is the result of an injury, like a ruptured ligament or a torn cartilage. Lower back pain is common among those older and less active, since they lose the strength and balance in the muscles (abs and lower back), leading to bad posture. Elbow pain is mostly experienced by people playing tennis or golf, but anyone can develop elbow pain.

Shoulder injuries are often seen in throwing sports like baseball, or other track and field games. Muscle spasms are experienced when there is tightness in any particular muscle area, and more often than not, can be painful. Football players usually have this kind of problem in their leg areas, where they usually stretch out their feet to kick the ball. A spasm is an unexpected contraction of the muscle, and is felt on the neck, back, shoulder, or legs. Muscle spasms can be avoided by football players using good and proper stretching techniques, most especially in their leg areas. Playing football is fun and fulfilling for football players and even sijmple spectators of the sport everywhere. Still, it is important to know the safety and health conditions of the players before playing, to avoid such injuries that might lead to more serious problems in the future.


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