Does your shoulder, tip of your elbow or knee hurt after doing a lot of mat work? If it does, you should know about bursitis. Bursitis is a painful condition resulting from inflamed bursae, the small fluid-filled sacs near your joints that help protect the surrounding bones, tendons, and muscles. While it usually affects the shoulder, elbow, and hip, bursitis can also occur in your knee, heel, the base of your big toe, and pretty much anywhere near joints that perform repetitive motions and receive mircotraumas.
In most cases, the pain associated with bursitis disappears within a few weeks of treatment. However, it can reoccur again, especially if you’re not careful with the affected area.
How Do You Know if You Have Bursitis?
It is relatively easy to know if you have bursitis. Apart from pain, feeling achy or stiff in the affected area, experiencing more pain when you move it or exert pressure on it, and the affected joint looking swollen and red are three of the most common signs of bursitis.
If you’re not sure if the pain in your joint is caused by bursitis, it’s always better to see a doctor than to self-diagnose. Consulting your doctor is especially encouraged if you have disabling joint pain, pain lasting for more than one week, and excessive swelling redness, bruising, or rash in the affected area. It’s also advised that you seek professional medical advice if you have fever or if you experience sharp or shooting pain when you exert yourself.
What Causes Bursitis?
As mentioned earlier, bursitis results from inflamed bursae. The bursae become irritated and inflamed when they are exposed to repetitive motions and positions for a prolonged period of time such as when:
- Practicing a lot of armbars
- Landing repeatedly on your elbows
- Practicing a lot of single or double leg takedowns when dropping to the knee(s)
- Prolonged kneeling especially on hard surfaces