Recurrent Injuries

Recurrent injury is an injury to any location on the body that previously sustained the same injury. It can be due to an accident, sport, or work-related. Sports injuries can often be recurrent with subsequent injuries being influenced by the first injury. Most of the recurrent injuries are usually worse than the initial injury, as a tendon or muscle that was partially torn the first time may severely rupture the next time. Recurrent injuries could have a severe impact on the health and future participation of the injured, and could even challenge the career of an athlete.

Who are most prone to recurrent injuries?

  • Recurrent injuries are most common in athletes and schoolchildren. Recurrent injury patterns vary by sport and gender. Football players have the highest rate of recurrent injuries, and girls are more prone to recurrent injuries than boys. Ankles, knees, shoulders, and head are most prone to recurrent injuries, with the injuries being muscle sprains, ligament strains, and concussions.
  • Work related recurrent injuries most often affect the neck and back. Exerting too much force on the back, repetitive movements, and abnormal posture contribute to muscle fatigue and injury.
  • Poor proprioception, neglecting symptoms of pain or weakness, incomplete rehabilitation, poor warm-up, and overuse are often associated with re-injury.


The best way to prevent recurrent injuries begins with preventing initial injuries. Knowledge of injury patterns and treatment modalities is essential in preventing recurrent injuries. A physical therapy program helps professional athletes rehabilitate and return to their sport after the injury. A physical therapy program deals with the injuries sustained by children involved in any sport, and is well designed to treat recurrent injuries. As there are specific injuries to each sport, an individualized professional treatment program designed by the physical therapist helps to avoid re-injury. The treatment modality often involves application of heat or cold, massage, use of assistive or adaptive devices, and developing wellness-oriented programs to encourage healthier and more active lifestyles. A focused rehabilitation program can improve flexibility, strength, and range of motion, and help the patient return back to their favourite sport or daily routine with confidence.