Lesson 1, Topic 1
In Progress

Stress ladder

Six stage injury stress ladder

This is a concept developed by Nyasha Charandura showing the progression of an injury from predisposing factors up to consequences of limited knowledge in managing injuries.


Exercise is a form of stress where a human body have to adapt for development to take place. Most coaches believe in the no pain no gain concept while pain is a sign of a load exceeding the ability . Quick response through either lowering of the load or recovery is very important to facilitate adaptation through recovery failure to do that leads to malfunctioning of the tissues.

Tissue Malfunctioning (Sickness /Overloading)

Uncontrolled loads lead to reduced ability of tissues thus, tissue malfunctioning. It important to note symptoms of injuries such as reduced performance, change in walking gates, facial expressions, etc. This helps in facilitating recovery processes hence quick return to play.

Tissue damage

Tissue malfunctioning symptoms are a campus to tissue damage. This is usually due to overload, most injuries especially sprains and strains comes with a warning which we usually ignore due to the no pain no gain philosophy. This is very common on set ups where coaches do not take input from player and other supporting stuff. The first person to get the symptoms are players, hence there is need for a clear communication channel between players and the coach during activities.

Reactive Stress

Now the player is injured, there are two things involved determined by the way the athlete and his/her surroundings are going to react to circumstances. The reaction will either lead too recovery or worsening of the situation. The athlete’s mental strength plays a pivotal role on the next step.

System failure

Injuries affect different systems and they differ in their rate of recovery. One of the most important factor is initiating early rehabilitation post acute phase, failure to do that may lead to system failure to execute basic skills that an athlete used to do easily.


Injuries has classifications, some are life threatening and can lead to death if not properly managed, these include and not limited to concussions, heart attacks, and spinal. The ability to manage these injuries in the field of play is key through basic life support skills is very important that’s why coaches need to be impacted with knowledge especially in teams with limited resources to occupy fulltime physiotherapists and paramedics. Life can be lost due to ignorance.