Elena Isla, medical manager of Madrid Football Cup: “My life is linked to football”

Elena Isla, medical manager of Madrid Football Cup: “My life is linked to football”

We interviewed Elena Isla, responsible for the medical services of the Madrid Football Cup. Elena holds a degree in Medicine and Surgery from the Autonomous University of Madrid, a doctor from the Autonomous Women’s National Teams of Madrid, a Referees Committee and a teacher at the School of Coaches. the RFFM and in Sports Medicine Services. In addition, he is a Member of the AEMEF (Spanish Association of Physicians of Football Teams) and FEMEDE.

Among his multiple degrees, he has a FIFA Diploma in Soccer Medicine, Master’s Degree in Sports Traumatology UCAM and Official Master’s Degree in Sports Training and Nutrition at Escuela Real Madrid C.F.-UEM.

When asked what football means to her, she responds: “My life has always been linked to football, I have learned with it to have values, to create bonds of union, to form a group with discipline, effort and improvement. I perform stress tests and medical examinations, anthropometric assessment to athletes, to advise our patients the correct diet both in pre and competition as well as the prescription of exercise and rehabilitation of injuries”. 

  1. Where does your vocation for sports medicine come from?

My life has always been linked to medicine, since my parents are doctors, specifically my mother is a sports doctor and I had the opportunity to see the profession close by. In addition, the outpatient rotary of Sixth of Medicine I did in a First Division Club, and it was an experience that I liked so much that it influenced the decision to train for my professional future.

  1. How is the medical service of a tournament with so many teams?

A good organization is crucial with medical services, ambulances, physiotherapists and delegates. From the first day, the protocols to be followed should be made clear and the function of each one should be established.

  1. What evidence includes a complete sports medical check-up?

From a basic medical examination in which anamnesis is included, physical examination by appliances and Ruffier Test (http://www.blancadecastilla.es/edfisica/_ARTICULOS/Test%20de%20Ruffier.pdf), up to a complete one including electrocardiogram, spirometry, stress test with gas analyzer, echocardiogram, study of body composition and prescription of exercise and diet if necessary.

  1. What are the most common muscle injuries in football and how to prevent them?

 The most frequent muscle injuries in football are at the level of the lower train, muscles such as quadriceps, hamstring, gastrocnemius, soleus … It is important to train correctly, control loads and warm up prior to matches, working with the trainers of your equipment. Just as important, proper nutrition and hydration before, during and after physical exercise and sports shoes adapting the type of cue to the playing field.

  1. What are the joints or muscle groups that should be treated with special attention?

As I said before, the most frequent injuries in football are at the level of the lower limbs, due to this special attention to the knee and ankle joint. Although in recent studies, there is an increase in injuries at the level of upper limb in lower categories because they do not know the correct technique of falling. Therefore highlight the importance of prevention programs for injuries from the smallest working with trainers and retractors of injuries.

  1. What is it like to work with a soccer team? How is a soccer player different from a normal patient?

To work in a soccer team is to be at the service of the players and technical bodies. Our job as doctors is to give help, assistance and support to the players who are the most important figure. They differ from a normal patient in that they are generally healthy, young people, without added illnesses, and being physically well prepared they have a faster recovery capacity for injuries.

  1. How can we be sure that we have fully recovered from an injury?

We must work in a multidisciplinary way with doctors, physiotherapists and retraining of injuries and make a continuous follow-up of the injury. When he gradually enters the field, partially and totally with the team and finally is fit for the competition, we can say that he is recovered.

  1. Is it advisable to carry out a medical check-up prior to the tournament?

Each player in their respective teams must have passed a medical examination that their Federation requires in order to compete.

  1. What are the guidelines to follow in case of injury of a player?

First of all we make an assessment in medical service, and it is decided if it requires displacement by ambulance to a hospital center, always accompanied by team leader and also by our delegation.

  1. To what extent are physical exercise and health related?

They go hand in hand. Sport not only prevents, but reverses some diseases. Physical activity should be another element in our day to day.

  1. Do we have to look at the elite athletes or is the example to be more realistic?

  It is true that, for younger children, professional footballers are a reference, but the important thing is to lead a healthy life, good nutrition and physical exercise.

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