Playing soccer with a pinched nerve caused by a herniated disc

It may be possible to participate fully in recreational soccer while experiencing symptoms associated with a pinched nerve caused by a herniated disc. However, the likelihood of participating in high-impact physical activities depends on the severity and location of the symptoms, as they vary greatly from person to person. If you can tolerate the pain, tingling, numbness or muscle weakness associated with a pinched spinal nerve, it is not necessary to withhold from recreational activities such as soccer.

As with most physical activity, it is important to be cautious and stay informed in order to prevent further injury from occurring. Prior to beginning a soccer game, be sure to gently stretch your muscles by doing a warm-up in order to soothe the pinched nerve and help with flexibility. If your symptoms become severe during a soccer game, it is advisable to stop playing and take a few days of rest to ease your irritated nerve. To learn more about the cause of a pinched nerve as well as treatment options if your symptoms become debilitating, read the following article.

How is a pinched nerve caused by a herniated disc?

Although the public commonly uses the term pinched nerve, the condition is more properly referred to as a compressed (impinged) nerve. With a herniated disc, the gel-like center of a spinal disc that acts as a cushion between the vertebrae, known as a nucleus pulposus, leaks through a crack in the disc’s outer wall. This opening can be caused by injury or through normal wear on the body as it ages. When the pushed out nucleus pulposus presses against one of the delicate nerve roots along the spine, it can produce potentially excruciating symptoms, including pain that radiates along the path of a nerve.

Treatment options for a pinched nerve caused by a herniated disc

Although chronic pain from a pinched nerve caused by a herniated disc can be unbearable, it normally can be managed through conservative treatments like pain medication, stretching and even some forms of low-impact exercise. Talk to your doctor about your conservative treatment options and make sure to bring up the topic of recreational sports like soccer if that’s a normal part of your lifestyle.

If the symptoms associated with a pinched nerve won’t go away after several weeks of conservative treatment, contact Laser Spine Institute to learn whether our outpatient procedures, performed using advanced techniques, can help you find meaningful relief from neck or back pain. Our procedures use muscle-sparing techniques through a less than 1-inch incision that causes less bleeding and results in a shorter recovery compared to traditional open neck or back surgery.^

At Laser Spine Institute, we have had the privilege of helping more than 75,000 people find relief from chronic conditions like a pinched nerve caused by a herniated disc. We offer a no-cost MRI review* to determine if you are a potential candidate for our minimally invasive spine surgery that can get you back to the activities you love, like recreational soccer.

Browse Related Resources