How to avoid a Pickleball Injury

A graphic featuring a male and female player engaged in a game of pickleball. They are actively participating in the sport, demonstrating agility, coordination, and focus. The graphic promotes Sport & Spine Physical Therapy, highlighting their expertise in helping individuals enhance their performance and recover from pickleball-related injuries."

How to Avoid a Pickleball Injury

Do you love the sport of Pickleball? It’s quickly gaining popularity in our area, so we asked our DPT, Luke in Wittenberg, for tips to avoid injury. Click here to watch Luke go through a proper stretch for pickleball.


Warm-ups are an essential part of any physical activity, including pickleball. Here are some warm-up exercises that can help you prepare for your game:

Light Jogging: Start by jogging for 5-10 minutes. This will help get your heart rate up and warm up your muscles.

Dynamic Stretching: Perform dynamic stretching exercises that involve movements such as side shuffles, high knees, butt kicks, Frankenstein’s, etc. These exercises can help to loosen up your muscles and improve your flexibility.

Shoulder Rotations: Rotate your shoulders forward and backward, and then lift your arms above your head and circle them in a clockwise and anticlockwise direction.

Arm Swings: Hold your arms out at shoulder height and swing them back and forth, crossing them in front of your chest and then out to the sides. This will help to warm up your shoulders and upper back.

Squats: Perform a few sets of squats to activate your glutes and leg muscles. Make sure to keep your back straight and your knees aligned with your toes.

Pickleball-Specific Drills: Finally, consider doing some pickleball-specific drills such as volleying or practicing your serves. This will help you to warm up your muscles and improve your game-specific skills.

Remember to start slowly and gradually increase the intensity of your warm-up. Take your time, listen to your body, and don’t push yourself too hard. By warming up properly, you can help to prevent injuries and perform at your best during the game.

A photo showcasing Luke Wirkus and Andy Davis, PT's at Sport & Spine Physical Therapy, playing pickleball at Marathon Park in Wausau, WI.

How can Physical Therapy help with my Pickleball injury?

Pickleball players may experience various types of injuries, such as sprains, strains, tendonitis, or tennis elbow. If you have sustained an injury while playing pickleball, a physical therapist can help you recover and prevent future injuries. Here are some common physical therapy treatments for pickleball injuries:

Rest and Ice: Resting the injured area and applying ice can help reduce pain and swelling. Your physical therapist may recommend ice therapy for 10-20 minutes several times a day.

Stretching and Strengthening Exercises: Your physical therapist can guide you through stretching and strengthening exercises to improve flexibility, range of motion, and muscle strength. These exercises can help prevent future injuries and improve your performance on the court.

Manual Therapy: Manual therapy techniques such as massage, joint mobilization, and soft tissue mobilization can help reduce pain, improve circulation, and promote healing.

Modalities: Modalities such as ultrasound, electrical stimulation, and hot/cold therapy can also help reduce pain and promote healing.

If you are interested in participating in a Pickleball tournament, the Marathon County Parks, Recreation, and Forestry department will be hosting their annual Slam-O-Rama tournament in Wausau, WI August 18, 19, and 20!

If you need assistance with recuperating from a pickleball injury or simply want to receive guidance, reach out to Sport & Spine and schedule an appointment. The link is below.