Causes of spinal pinched nerves include participation in certain sports

Although spinal nerve compression is primarily an age-related condition, participation in certain sports is certainly a contributor to spinal pinched nerves in people of all ages. Sports are a great way to maintain a healthy body weight, increase strength and flexibility and enjoy an active lifestyle. However certain sports also tend to increase strain on the spine, which can cause problems down the road.

This isn’t to say that playing sports is bad or there is a direct link between sporting activities and spine problems, but it is important to be mindful of potential risks and to take the necessary steps to reduce the likelihood of problems developing.

Sports that can cause problems

The most obvious way that sports can cause neck and back problems is through injury. When you play any sport, you are accepting a certain amount of risk with regard to experiencing strains, sprains, bruises and minor aches and pains. Pulling a muscle in your neck or back while playing football is quite normal and something most players have to deal with at some point.

However, there is another potential problem associated with participation in sports beyond the short term. As we grow older, our spinal anatomy naturally begins to deteriorate and playing certain sports can potentially accelerate this process. A few examples of the sports that put significant strain on the spine, either through direct impact or repetitive twisting, include:

  • Football
  • Hockey
  • Soccer
  • Baseball
  • Golf
  • Rugby
  • Tennis

How to avoid pinched nerves

While pinched nerves cannot be avoided entirely and a degenerative spine condition can develop even when every caution is used, there are some ways to reduce the chance that you’ll develop issues. For starters, be sure to always thoroughly stretch before participating in sports. You should take frequent breaks, stop if you start to feel uncomfortable and stay hydrated. It’s also a good idea to consult your doctor regularly to help make sure that you are taking care of the long-term health of your spine.

If you experience a pinched nerve as a result of a spine disorder and you are exploring treatment options, contact Laser Spine Institute and learn about our many minimally invasive spine procedures. For patients who have exhausted conservative options and are considering a surgical procedure, our minimally invasive spine surgery is a safer and effective alternative to traditional open neck or back surgery.^

We’re pleased to offer a free MRI review* to determine if you are a potential candidate for one of our outpatient procedures.

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