Research shows that gymnastics has the highest rate of practice-related injuries among all women's collegiate sports, as many as 71 percent of female gymnasts train with an injury. Not surprising, re-injury rates are high. Injury rates are highest at the most elite levels, and 45 percent of previous iinjuries continued to produce symptoms after gymnasts left the sport.
World vault champion McKayla Maroney refused to let a broken toe get in her way of becoming a champion at the London Olympics. She accidentally kicked a beam during practice shortly after team USA arrived in London, causing her big toe to start throbbing again. She originally broke her toe at a competition in Chicago in May a few months ago.
Tucson Podiatrist Dr. Alan Shih advises that the fundamental treatment is time off and a walking cast. While she may be able to compete at world class levels, healing won't happen until she has truly given her fracture a chance to heal. There are several exciting augmentative treatments that may help accelerate healing such as a bone stimulator, AmnioMatrix, PRP, or even Laser therapy.
While the training staff and McKayla are icing, using acupuncture and electrical stimulation to help the pain, she seems determined to vault, taping the big toe and second toe together to help maintain some stability to the fracture site.
While Maroney was able to git her way through her injury, another US gymnast - Anna Li, could not. The former All-American at UCLA was the oldest of the eight US team members. Considered too old at age 23, and too tall at 5-4, and injury ridden from two surgically repaired feet and other injuries. She has two pins in her navicular bone on each foot.
To learn more about common foot problems athletes face, get a copy of our Free Gotta Run? book or schedule an appointment today. If you've got a toe injury, ingrown nail, heel pain, or some other type of foot pain, contact Dr. Alan Shih at Head toe Healthcare, PLC.