How Physical Therapists Help Skaters With Broken Backs Avoid Paralysis

Skateboarding is a more challenging and potentially dangerous sport than many may realize. For example, a skater attempting a difficult flip off of a half-pipe may find themselves landing hard and breaking their back. When this happens, they may end up being at risk for paralysis if their injury worsens. Physical therapists can help avoid this danger, as long as the skater gets help quickly.

Broken Backs Are Quite Serious

Skateboarders who suffer a serious broken back after they land on the pavement may be worried about going paralyzed after the incident occurs. Thankfully, a broken back doesn't always mean that the spine has been snapped. Instead, it just means that some parts that support the spine (the vertebrae) may have broken, causing a lot of extensive pain and suffering that may take a skater out of the competition.

Unfortunately, poor treatment of a broken back or an inability to follow treatment guidelines could result in a broken spinal cord, such as if a skater puts too much pressure on a broken vertebra and allows the spine to break. When this happens, a skater will be paralyzed with little hope of recovery. Thankfully, physical therapy can help to make sure that this problem never happens.

Ways Physical Therapy May Help

Physical therapy for a broken back is designed to help the vertebrae grow stronger and prevent serious injuries. For example, stretches in and around this area can help to strengthen the supporting muscles around the vertebrae, allowing them to stay in place and avoid getting even more damaged. Therapy of this type must progress at a slow but persistent pace to avoid cracking the spine dangerously.

A skater going through this process will need to stay off their board and wear a back brace to keep their back as straight as possible. They may also need to go through other types of physical therapy to strengthen their body, such as various types of stretches, a handful of different strengthening routines throughout various areas of the body, and a handful of other strength-boosting techniques.

As a skater goes through this type of treatment, they may need to tweak their approach to prevent a worsening condition. For instance, as their back health improves, therapy may become more focused and strenuous to further boost their recovery. If they notice any pain during this process, it may be necessary for them to talk to their physical therapist to avoid worsening their condition further.

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