Friday, 19 July 2019

Ligaments vs Tendons; Sprains vs Strains; unravelled!

People often interchange the terms sprains and strains when talking about injuries but there is a difference.  Read on and I hope I can clear it up...

Ligaments and tendons are both made up of fibrous connective tissue but they have different roles and functions.

  • Ligaments attach bones to bones
  • Ligaments help stabilise joint
  • Ligaments are not very elastic
  • Imagine a belt or strap connecting, for example, your shin and thigh bones
  • Tendons attach muscles to bones
  • Tendons help to move the joint and absorb some impact on the muscles
  • Tendons are more elastic than ligaments but not as elastic as muscles
  • Imagine tough bungee cords or straps, for example, your achilles tendon

Bearing the above in mind then the terms Sprains and Strains are used to differentiate between injuries:

  • A Sprain is an overstretch or tear to a ligament
  • Sprains commonly occur at the ankle, knee or wrist
  • A Strain is an overstretch or tear to a muscle
  • Strains commonly occur in the leg, arm or back

Sports Massage can aid recovery from both sprains and strains. Please get in contact to see how I can help.

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