Weekend warriors: Common injuries, prevention and treatment

Weekend warriors are people who only participate in activities in their spare time. They may or may not maintain a routine exercise program and then participate in vigorous activities over a short or abbreviated period of time. Does this sound like you?

Frequently, this is a recipe for injury. Here are some of the most common injuries weekend warriors experience:

Hamstring, Quadriceps and Calf Muscles

  • These are often strained or torn when they’re forcefully moved while stiff or weak.
  • Treatment: Rest, compression, elevation, gentle stretching, avoiding activity.


  • Knee tendons are especially prone to injury if they haven’t been stretched properly before activity.
  • Treatment: Rest, anti-inflammatory medication, using a brace, activity modification, ice. However, if a tendon tears, the only treatment is surgery.

Intra-articular Knee Injury (inside the knee)

  • These include meniscal tears, ligament tears, and cartilage injuries. They can be prevented by strengthening the muscles around the joint.
  • Treatment: Injuries can range widely in severity. Likewise treatment may range from rest, using a brace, or getting injections to physical therapy or surgery.

Although the knee is often injured in the weekend warrior, this can be prevented.  A good routine exercise and stretching program during the week can significantly reduce the likelihood of a major knee injury and either loss of playing time or need for surgery to reconstruct a knee.


By Benjamin Petre, MD, orthopedic surgeon at AAMC Orthopedics. To reach him, call 410-268-8862.
Originally published March 10, 2015. Last updated June 16, 2020.

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