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COMMON HAND AND WRIST INJURIES IN STRIKING SPORTS – PART 9 – Finger Dislocations

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Dislocation of the proximal interphalangeal joint (closest joint of the finger) is also very common. Dorsal (to the back) dislocation may lead to volar plate and ligament damage, and therefore requires proper diagnosis and follow up. If the dislocation is stable, only buddy taping (where the 2 fingers are taped together) is required, followed by early mobilization to avoid stiffening of the joint...

COMMON HAND AND WRIST INJURIES IN STRIKING SPORTS – PART 8 – Finger Fractures

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Fractures of the fingers are more common in combat sports where a full boxing glove is not worn (karate, taekwondo, MMA, etc.) and are also common in grappling. The type of management will depend on the location of the fracture.  Fractures of the proximal and middle phalanges (the closest and middle bones of the finger) are often accompanied by avulsion (where a fragment of bone is pulled away by...

COMMON HAND AND WRIST INJURIES IN STRIKING SPORTS – PART 7 – TFCC injury

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The triangular fibrocartilage complex (TFCC) consists of a cartilaginous disc that lies between the ulnar and the triquetrum and lunate bones, the ulnar meniscus, the sheath of the extensor carpi ulnaris (one of the muscles responsible for extending and ulnar deviating the wrist), and several ligaments of the wrist and hand. The complex is loaded in movements that involve axial compression in a...

COMMON HAND AND WRIST INJURIES IN STRIKING SPORTS – PART 5 – Bennett’s Fracture

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A Bennett’s fracture refers to a fracture of the base of the 1st metacarpal, the long bone that articulates with the thumb. As this is an intra-articular (occurring within the joint capsule), the injury often involves damage to the structures around the adjacent joint and the adjacent bone (the trapezium) (1). This injury typically occurs with excessive axial compression (compression down the...

COMMON HAND AND WRIST INJURIES IN STRIKING SPORTS – PART 4 – Carpal Bossing Carpal bossing refers to disruption of the carpometacarpal joint (the joints between the second row of wrist bones and the long bones in the hand). This injury is typically caused by axial loading of the metacarpal bones. The joints of the wrist are very precise, like a lock and key, and excessive load in even...

COMMON HAND AND WRIST INJURIES IN STRIKING SPORTS – PART 3 – The Boxer’s Fracture

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The boxer’s fracture is a fracture of the 5th metatarsal (little finger side). As this is obviously not the target area of contact with a punch, this injury is often caused by suboptimal punching technique. In a typical punch, the knuckles of the 2nd and 3rd rays should make contact, allowing for a smooth transfer of force across the joint. However, when contact is made with the 4th or 5th rays...

COMMON HAND AND WRIST INJURIES IN STRIKING SPORTS – PART 2 – The Boxer’s Knuckle

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The boxer’s knuckle refers to an injury to the extensor mechanism of the fingers (the musculo-tendinous unit that allows the finger to extend) and is one of the more serious musculoskeletal injuries in boxing. During a punch, the metacarpophalangeal joint (the joint of the knuckle) is rapidly forced into flexion, stretching the surrounding soft tissue to its maximum tolerance. Over time this may...

COMMON HAND AND WRIST INJURIES IN STRIKING SPORTS – PART 1

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Due to the frequency of hand contact, the impact with which this contact occurs and the complexity of the region, injuries to the hand and wrist are by far the most documented injuries in striking combat athletes. The impact related to punching results in a positive remodelling of bone and soft tissue over time, causing the tissues to become stronger and more resilient. We refer to this process...

Safely Returning to Exercise after Lockdown 

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We understand that some combat athletes at the elite level have had specific access to training facilities during this period of lockdown. For many amateur and recreational athletes, however, the period of isolation has likely restricted training options. As restrictions gradually begin to ease, there are some important points to keep in mind when returning to training to prevent the likelihood...

The Right Leg’s Connected to the … Left Leg?

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The Right Leg’s Connected to the … Left Leg? Rehabilitation of any injury or condition is a multifaceted process that requires attention to every aspect related to a successful recovery. One of the factors often overlooked is the maintenance of conditioning on the non-affected side. What many individuals, including coaches and clinicians, often fail to appreciate is the fact that training the non...

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