Everybody has underlying vulnerabilities that mean that their bodies or minds do not deal with stress, whether physical or mental, as well and this can make them more prone to certain overuse injuries in particular and possibly other kinds of injury too. These vulnerabilities are risk factors for injury. In these pages I just mention my vulnerabilities by way of example and because they are relatively common ones, but obviously your vulnerabilities may be different. My vulnerabilities are 2 kinds of anatomical vulnerability (scoliosis and pes cavus) that can predispose to physical injury and under the heading of ‘sensitivity’ I examine a psychological vulnerability that can predispose to psychological injury or illness. You may have different anatomical and psychological vulnerabilities that predispose you to physical or mental injury.
What risk factors/vulnerabilities are there to stress?
There are clear anatomical vulnerabilities to physical stress that serve as risk factors for injury. These can either be genetic vulnerabilities such as the shape of your bones etc., or previous injury. For example, the individual who has a pes cavus shaped foot does not absorb the stress of walking as well as an individual with a more standard foot shape because they lack some of the rolling foot motion (pronation) that helps to absorb stress. A previous injury is also a risk factor because even though you may be symptom free the tissues may not have healed completely. You also may be repeating behaviour that makes you susceptible to re-injury or the previous injury may be connected to a vulnerability associated with a genetic vulnerability.