5 Common Pickleball Injuries in 2024 and How to Avoid Them

pickleball injuries are quite common

Even though pickleball is less rigorous and more accessible than tennis, experts confirm that despite the less strenuous gameplay, picklers can be injured due to chronic overexposure to the game.

Remember folks:

Pickleball is still a sport, so you must be careful not to overdo it and treat any injury symptoms. Regardless of your age, you’re never too old to play pickleball!

Pickleball players frequently confess that they’re hooked on the game. Most of them have had physical injuries due to overuse. They really ought to play just a little bit better.

Some of the pickleball overuse injuries that can occur are detailed below.

Ankle Sprains

Pickleball ankle sprains happen when there is a strain and tear of ligaments around the ankle joint.  Most ankle sprains will heal on their own if rested and protected. Even if a full ligament tear does occur, it will most likely recover. Rest with ankle protection are your initial recommendations for a sprained ankle.

Achilles Tendonitis

Achilles tendonitis may be perceived as a sharp, tearing pain in the ankle area due to overuse. This injury is common among pickleball players, who engage in repetitive movements with sudden stops.

Pickleball Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is a frequent reason for heel pain in pickleball players that’s often attributed to inflammation in the band between your toes.

There are several factors that can contribute to this – such as wearing improper shoes without sufficient arch support or playing on severely hard surfaces for extended periods.

Treat your plantar fasciitis early as it can be quite painful!

Shin Splints in Pickleball

Pickleball shin splints are a complicated injury to diagnose because they can happen due to a variety of factors, such as inappropriate footwear and training techniques. For others, it’s the result of too much time on their feet or running at high speeds, causing structural issues because they don’t have enough mobility.

Shin splints can be very painful and can cause inflammation in the lower leg area.

Rotator Cuff Tendonitis

As they bounce around playing pickleball, the tendons of the shoulder get compressed against the side of the shoulder blade, causing them to experience rotator cuff tendinitis. This has commonly been brought on by intense shoulder use in pickleball – no surprise.

Players typically have to deal with pain and stiffness in their shoulders, pain, and weakness or reduced range of movement in the shoulder area.

Pickleball is a sport and as with any sport there will be certain injuries – and some can be avoided.

These include acute ankle sprain, tendonitis in the Achilles region or other prolonged regions on the body such as feet or knees (see Pickleball vs. Tennis: surprising impact on your knees!); shin splints which happen when muscles connect to bone become inflamed due to too much pressure going through them; muscle strains resulting from overexertion causing tears and inflammation within muscles themselves plus anything else you might encounter in pickleball.

Have really bad back pain or improper balance? You may want to consider this stretching routine for pickleball players.

More severe overuse injuries can lead to a need for surgery or a prolonged period of rest (multiple months or more).

Prevention of pickleball injuries include:

  • Proper footwear. Tennis shoes or court shoes are the best pickleball shoes. Choose footwear with ample cushioning, grip, and lateral support, as well as an outsole with a superior tread pattern.
  • Adequately warming up prior to games
  • Thoroughly resting in between games
  • Backing off when any pains or aches are felt
Common Pickleball Injuries – Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

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