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Artificial Turf vs. Grass: The Debate Continues

We’ve come a long way from the earliest versions of artificial turf, which were essentially large pieces of green plastic laid down over cement. The newest generations of artificial turf are radically better than the very first versions, yet the debate over which type of surface is best from a safety standpoint continues.

We’ll highlight this week some of the latest published research in this debate. In a large series specifically studying collegiate tackle football, it was determined that playing on artificial turf was an increased risk for PCL injuries in Division I players and for ACL injuries in Division II and Division III players.

While there are many strengths in this study, I would caution that the results are specific to American collegiate tackle football and may not be similar in other sports or in youth age groups.

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Three Innovations That Will Drive Sports Medicine In 2019

It’s very easy to get caught up in moonshots, longshots, and fantasy in the world of medicine, but I believe there are three highly innovative technologies that will have an increasingly prominent role and impact sports medicine in 2019.

The first of these is increasing use of biologics in sports medicine injury treatment. Second is the rapidly expanding range of treatment options for active individuals with knee arthritis. And finally, I expect to see an exponential increase in telemedicine and mobile algorithms to provide initial injury guidance.

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Real-Time Mobile Sensor Data Shows Pitchers’ Arm Fatigues Quickly

Many people have a sense that injuries happen more often when you’re tired. We see this all the time in the orthopedic clinic: someone tears an ACL on the last planned run of a long weekend of skiing; a volleyball player injures her ankle after the final game of a long series of tournament games. There is a common belief that fatigue plays a major role in increasing injury risk, but proving this can be difficult. A recent study on pitching mechanicsperformed at the Henry Ford Health System in Detroit, takes an interesting step in connecting the dots between fatigue, biomechanics, and possible injury risk. A wearable motion capture device allowed for real-time data acquisition in a simulated game setting.

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Why I Like The King-Devick Concussion Tool

I really like the King Devick rapid number naming testas part of a comprehensive concussion assessment program. We find it to be easy, fast, reliable, and with a large amount of independent scientific studies vouching for its validity. At the high schools I work with we use the King Devick in our preseason concussion baseline assessment and then use it as a part of our comprehensive evaluation for in-game concussions. I’d recommend you consider using it too. (Neither I, nor Sideline Sports Doc have any financial relationship with the company).

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A New Way To Get Strong

As an orthopedic surgeon and sports medicine specialist I see a lot of folks who  need to gain strength to recover from injury, or as part of an overall rehabilitation program. The problem we often run in to is that the traditional way to build strength is often very difficult for these folks either because it will increase joint pain or because there are specific loading limitations that are part of their rehab plan after surgery.

What anyone in this situation really needs is a safe way to build strength that does not lead to joint pain or risk a surgical repair. What if there was a way to effectively build strength using much lower resistance loads than those associated with traditional strength building methods?  Recently I’ve started using a technology called “blood flow restriction” bands that I believe could open up an entirely new pathway for strength gains in these situations.

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Improve Sports Performance With Better PJs?

By Dev K. Mishra, M.D. President, Sideline Sports Doc Clinical Assistant Professor of Orthopedic Surgery, Stanford University Key Points: Under Armour sells a set of special sleepwear designed with input from Tom Brady, that they claim has therapeutic benefits for athletes Brady credits the sleepwear as a component of his amazing career success The benefits…

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Revisiting the Head First Slide and Breakaway Base Debates

By Dev K. Mishra, M.D. President, Sideline Sports Doc Clinical Assistant Professor of Orthopedic Surgery, Stanford University Key Points: A recent study shows that head first sliding has a higher injury risk than feet first sliding Additionally, breakaway bases also reduce injury risk from sliding Breakaway bases are required in Little League Baseball but have…

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Can We Predict ACL Injury Risk?

By Dev K. Mishra, M.D. President, Sideline Sports Doc Clinical Assistant Professor of Orthopedic Surgery, Stanford University Key Points: Some abnormal movement patterns, particularly with poor landing mechanics from jumping will lead to an increased risk for an ACL tear Video and forceplate movement analysis systems are available that are very good at screening for…

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The Shortest Workout Part 2: Blood Flow Restriction Exercise

By Dev Mishra, M.D. President, Sideline Sports Doc Clinical Assistant Professor of Orthopedic Surgery, Stanford University Key Points: Blood Flow Restriction (BFR) training involves use of KAATSU bands or pressure cuffs to temporarily restrict blood flow during resistance exercises This type of training is reported to substantially increase the strength of the involved limb much…

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Is There Wearable Technology In The Young Athlete’s Future?

By Dev K. Mishra, M.D. President, Sideline Sports Doc Clinical Assistant Professor of Orthopedic Surgery, Stanford University Key Points: Wearable technology is very popular for monitoring steps, energy expenditure, and movement patterns. The devices can generally be divided into step counters, accelerometers, GPS based devices, and physiologic measurement devices. Many systems combine several elements The…

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