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How to protect your spine from your tennis serve .pdf



Original filename: How to protect your spine from your tennis serve.pdf
Title: How to protect your spine from your tennis serve http://www.tennisidentity.com/2017/02/how-to-protect-your-spine-from-your-tennis-serve.html
Author: VPatil

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How to protect your spine from your
tennis serve

http://www.tennisidentity.com/2017/
02/how-to-protect-your-spine-fromyour-tennis-serve.html

When most people think about chronic injuries that occur from tennis,
they usually think of “tennis elbow.” But if you ask a serious tennis player about
the most common tennis-related injuries, low back pain will almost always make
that list. There’s good reason for that. We spoke with Dr. Todd Lanman, a spine
surgeon in Beverly Hills, California.
He says that:
“imaging studies such as MRI show that 62% of serious amateur, elite, and
professional tennis players have injuries in the spine in their lower backs. In fact,
four out of ten professional tennis players admit to missing at least one tennis
tournament because of low back pain.”
So while low back pain and spine injury may not be as famous as an injury in that
other joint, it is clearly a big problem for tennis players.

When most people think about chronic injuries that occur from tennis, they usually
think of “tennis elbow.” But if you ask a serious tennis player about the most
common tennis-related injuries, low back pain will almost always make that list.
There’s good reason for that. We spoke with Dr. Todd Lanman, a spine surgeon in
Beverly Hills, California. He says that:
“imaging studies such as MRI show that 62% of serious amateur, elite, and
professional tennis players have injuries in the spine in their lower backs. In fact, four
out of ten professional tennis players admit to missing at least one tennis
tournament because of low back pain.”
So while low back pain and spine injury may not be as famous as an injury in that
other joint, it is clearly a big problem for tennis players.

If you’re an avid player, you’ve probably thought a lot about your serve. But you may
not have thought a lot about how your body is affected by your serve. Dr. Lanman
states,
“One of the most common causes of back pain and injury to tennis players is the
serve. You place extreme forces on your spine during a tennis serve.”
Dr. Lanman is a world-renowned spine surgeon at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los
Angeles. As a top back and neck surgery specialist practicing in Beverly Hills, he
counts many professional athletes, business leaders, and entertainment luminaries
among his clients.
Consider what a serve does to your body. You start out by hyperextending your back,
stretching out the muscles and elongating the spine. The spinal column is not
vertically straight during the serve, either, as it would like to be. The serve itself is a
violently rapid contraction of these same muscles coupled with a forcible rotation of
almost the entire body.
Imagine how these forces are transmitted along the length of your spine. The
vertebrae in your lower back (lumbar vertebral) really don’t handle rotation very
well, especially forceful rotation. The vertebral discs between the bones don’t
handle it well either. This is largely why 30% of tennis players have disc herniation
(i.e. bulging disc) in their lumbar spines (i.e. lower back).



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