Pickleball is a relatively safe sport with a low risk of serious injury when taking appropriate precautions. Here are the common risks and precautionary steps to take to mitigate these risks.
- Florida has more lightning strikes than any other state. When lightning is detected within 10 miles of Pictona everyone in the following locations must move indoors immediately: all uncovered courts, under the 10 shade structures, under the SR Perrott Pavilion, the picnic pavilion, and the recreation courts. We may continue playing under the covered courts when it is lightning in the area.
- The courts become slick and the risk of falling increases along with the risk of straining a muscle. Discontinue playing immediately and wait for the courts to dry. You can continue playing on the covered courts unless the rain encroaches on these courts.
- Falling. Running backwards for the ball, tripping over your partner’s feet, and crashing into the court fences can result in serious injury. As a person falls the tendency is to catch him or herself by placing a hand down on the court, which may result in a sprain or broken wrist.
- Striking Your Partner. In doubles, when both players move to return a ball, there is the risk of one player being struck by the other player’s swinging paddle. The best way to avoid this injury is to call out who is returning the ball.
- Eye Injuries. These can be very serious when struck by the ball or your partner’s paddle. Minimize the risk by wearing safety glasses.
- Muscle Strains and Sprains. These are the most common acute injuries in pickleball. Proper conditioning, appropriate warm up, and skillful movement reduce the chance of these injuries. Follow the RICE steps to treat these injuries: Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation. Return to play slowly to avoid re-injury.
- Overuse Injuries. Repeated actions, especially those made with intensity and incorrect mechanics over time, may result in overuse injuries. Tennis elbow, frozen shoulder, runner’s knee, Achilles tendinitis, shin splints, and plantar fasciitis are common examples of chronic overuse injuries. Treatment of these injuries often takes time, icing, slow stretching, better mechanics, and proper warm up.
- Heat Injuries. It’s hot and muggy for many months in Florida. Failure to properly hydrate may result in heat exhaustion, and far more seriously, heat stroke. Go here to learn how to recognize, prevent, and treat heat injuries (Drink to Win poster)
Keep in mind it’s just a game. Play safe so you can play tomorrow.
For minor scrapes and cuts come to the Welcome Desk to use our First Aid Kit.
For serious injuries where urgent care is required call 911.
If a person is down and the heart has stopped apply CPR, send someone for the AED kit, and call 911. An AED kit is located at the Pavilion and another on the outside wall of the Clubhouse when exiting to the covered courts.
Injury Reporting. Please notify the Welcome Desk about any serious injury so we can record the details of the injury and what action was taken to respond to the injury.