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Be a good sport – be a first-aider!

Kurt Zouma recently added his name to the growing list of footballers to have suffered gruesome, wince-inducing knee injuries.

The Chelsea defender landed awkwardly after contesting a high ball and had to be stretchered off during the blues’ match against Manchester United.

While it’s high-profile injuries such as these that grab the headlines, the unfortunate truth is that us amateurs hurt ourselves playing the games we love all too frequently.

Whether it’s down to bad weather conditions, failure to warm up properly, pushing ourselves too hard or using the wrong equipment/clothing, sporting injuries are a fact of life whatever your activity of choice.   

Indeed, sports injuries accounted for roughly 2% of cases seen in accident and emergency (A&E) departments in 2014, according to the Health and Social Care Information Centre.

Health website WebMD has produced a list of the seven most common sports injuries. According to the list, they are:

1)    Ankle sprain

2)    Groin pull

3)    Hamstring strain

4)    Shin splints

5)    Knee injury: ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) tear

6)    Knee injury: Patellofemoral syndrome — injury resulting from the repetitive movement of your kneecap against your thigh bone

7)    Tennis elbow (epicondylitis)

As you can see, the majority of injuries on the list are suffered suddenly during exercise, rather than caused by a gradual build-up of pain through repetition.

Further proof, if any were needed, of the importance of having a trained first-aider around – whether you’re running up the wing for your Sunday League football side, playing goal attack for your netball team or trying to emulate Andy Murray or Johanna Konta on the tennis court!

It can be easy to put off going to a first-aid course, or to see it as someone else’s job.

As any good sports coach will tell you, though, there’s no ‘I’ in team.

If you’re a sports and fitness enthusiast, why not take the bull by the horns and get qualified to help treat injuries when they happen?

Never mind scoring a winning goal, attending an emergency first-aid course will equip you with the skills and know-how to be a true hero in someone’s hour of need.

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