Bowling is an activity enjoyed by men and women, adults and children alike. Whether pursuing the game professionally, or just enjoying some fun with the family, bowling can create opportunities for injuries to occur. The movements necessary for bowling put repetitive stress on the structures of the upper extremity particularly the wrist, elbow and shoulder joints.
Performing the same activities over an over again can cause wear and tear on the structures of the body most active when participating in bowling. In addition to the upper extremity, the areas of the body most prone to bowling-related injuries include the back, knee and hip.
A medical professional specifically trained in the treatment of sports-related injuries, like a sports physical therapist, should be consulted to properly diagnose a bowling injury and determine the best course of treatment.
Bowling Injury Risk Factors
There are intrinsic and extrinsic risk factors for injury. Intrinsic factors are a person’s individual musculoskeletal issues, which can include skeletal immaturity (bones and joints that are still developing) or muscle weakness. Extrinsic factors are the environment in which an athlete performs, which can include the level of competition: how much, how hard and how long play lasts.
Other common risk factors for bowling injuries include:
- Overuse from bowling too often and/or too quickly
- Poor warm-up
- Poor fitting bowling ball
- Poor conditioning
- Poor technique
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