What are the most common off-season training injuries?
Hip flexor, lower back, and groin pain, which all stem from the same source of muscle imbalance.
What are the causes of these injuries?
Muscle imbalance causes a pelvic dysfunction of the ilium on the sacrum, which means low back or muscle pain. Muscle imbalance can be caused by not rolling out or stretching during the season. If you do not manage your muscles after they work hard, they will become tight, and ultimately imbalanced.
Are these injuries preventable?
While there are always injuries that could not be foreseen, 90% of these injuries are preventable through proper stretching, mobility work, and soft tissue massage through rolling and trigger release. There are still athletes that may become injured even when doing all the right things, and those people may just need more hands on work. Training 5 days a week is a strain on your body, and it must be done properly, as your body is being pushed to a point of breakdown.
What can athletes do to negate these injuries?
Pre-activity preparation is the most proactive thing that can be done in injury prevention. In the hockey season you can use the movements and routines we do all summer like foam rolling, specific mobility preparation, movement preparation and dynamic preparation to decrease your chance of injury throughout the year.
In the summer, these pre-activity movements are just as important as lifting heavy weights in the gym. Weight training breaks your muscles down, causing an increased chance of injury.