The Secret to Reducing Your Risk of Sports Hernia.

The other day I sent out a tweet on ‘The Twitter’ with a quick tip for those hockey players who want to reduce their risk of sports hernia (which is every single one of you).  The tip…strengthen your adductors.

“Great tip Maria – oh so helpful.  Quick question – what the heck are my adductors and how the h3!! do I strengthen them genius?”

So glad you asked.  First let me explain the term ‘sports hernia’.  Basically, this is more of a syndrome or collection of symptoms rather than a discrete injury.  A hernia – umbilical or inguinal will have a protrusion of tissue through the abdominal wall.  A sports hernia on the other hand can be attributed to a number of surgical findings without an actual protrusion of tissue through the abdominal wall.

So basically, if an athlete is having pain in the lower abdominal or upper groin area that does not respond to typical treatment, they may be diagnosed with a sports hernia.

If we think about the postures and movements in hockey can you see how tightness in the front of the hip can contribute to a reduction in the ability to extend at the hip?  Then can you see how trying to skate with tightness in the front of the hip will put more stress through the abdominals as the lower back extends to compensate (I describe this a little better in the video)?

Can you also see how skating and even some training programs emphasize the development of the abductors (skating muscles), leaving the adductors (groins) relatively weak can set up a muscle imbalance that is found in athletes diagnosed with sports hernia?

Now that you have some background and understanding of sports hernia in hockey players, let’s look at a quick routine that will help reduce your risk of these injuries which will definitely leave you sitting in the stands if not lying on the operating table.

  • ½ kneeling groin w rotation- 10 each way
  • low cable hip shift w rotation – 10 each way
  • cable adductor – front and back – 10 each way OR
  • plate pull – 10 each way OR
  • TRX squat lateral – 10 each way

Exercises to help reduce the risk of sports hernia in hockey.

Happy training gang!