March 29, 2015, I flew out of Melbourne headed for Singapore with the Australian Country Open Age Men and Women Hockey teams as their team physiotherapist.
We spent two weeks touring from Singapore up to Malaysia, visiting Melaka, Ipoh, and Kuala Lumpur. During this time the Australian teams played a variety of teams including state and national representative squads.
As the team physiotherapist I would spend my mornings preparing players for the evening games. This would include hydrotherapy sessions, strapping, injury assessments, and massages. We would then pack all our gear onto the buses and head to the ground, where I was required to attend any immediate injuries sustained and ensure all players were adequately hydrated in such hot and humid conditions. Afterwards we pack up and head back to our hotel and start the process again the next morning.
Overall the trip was quite a success in terms of both great hockey and minimal injuries . There was just the one hospital trip for a split head, after being hit by a ball, which resulted in around 30 stitches. Otherwise we only had to deal with a few minor soft tissue injuries.
Generally on tours like this we tend to see a lot of overuse injuries occurring because of the quick increase in load and intensity of exercise on the player’s body. In hockey plantar fasciitis, shin splints, hamstring tendinopathies, and low back pain are most predominant.