New study finds increase in track-related injuries among youth in the United States

July 3, 2012

With the 2012 summer Olympic games about to take place in London, children everywhere are looking forward to watching their sports idols and role models take center stage. While the Olympics may inspire some to try a new sport, such as track, parents should be aware that this participation does not come without risk of injury.

A new study by researchers at the Center for Injury Research and Policy of The Research Institute at Nationwide Children's Hospital found that from 1991 through 2008 more than 159,000 children and adolescents between 10 and 18 years of age were treated in U.S. emergency departments for track-related injuries. The annual number of track-related injuries increased 36 percent during the 18-year study period, jumping from 7,702 in 1991 to 10,496 in 2008.

"Participation in track is a great way to encourage children and to remain physically active," said Lara McKenzie, PhD, principal investigator at the Center for Injury Research and Policy and senior author of the study. "However, the increase in injuries corresponding with the increased participation in this activity suggests we need to do a better job of preventing track-related injuries among our ."

According to the study, published in the journal, The Physician and Sportsmedicine, the most common injury diagnoses were sprains and/or (52 percent) and or dislocations (17 percent). The study looked at seven different track-related activities – sprinting, cross country, running, hurdles, relays, stretching and/or drills, and "other" activities. The most common activities being performed at the time of injury were running (59 percent) and hurdles (23 percent).

"We found that the most commonly injured body parts varied across activity and across age group. For instance, elementary students were more likely to sustain upper extremity injuries while high school students were more likely to sustain lower leg injuries," said Dr. McKenzie, also a professor of Pediatrics at The Ohio State University College of Medicine. "With this in mind, track-related injury prevention efforts may need to be tailored by activity for different age groups in order to most effectively address the injury concerns the athletes are facing."

This is the first study to use a nationally representative sample to examine track-related injuries that were treated in U.S. emergency departments. Data for this study were obtained from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System (NEISS), which is operated by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. The NEISS provides information on consumer product-related and sports and recreation-related injuries treated in hospital emergency departments across the country.

Explore further: New national study finds increase in football-related injuries among youth

More information: www.nationwidechildrens.org/in … -research-and-policy

Related Stories

New national study finds increase in football-related injuries among youth

April 12, 2011
A new study conducted by researchers in the Center for Injury Research and Policy of The Research Institute at Nationwide Children's Hospital found that an estimated 5.25 million football-related injuries among children and ...

Study examines injuries with baby bottles, pacifiers and sippy cups in the US

May 14, 2012
A new study by researchers in the Center for Biobehavioral Health and the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children's Hospital examined pediatric injuries associated with baby bottles, pacifiers and sippy ...

Recommended for you

Americans misinformed about smoking

August 22, 2017
After voluminous research studies, numerous lawsuits and millions of deaths linked to cigarettes, it might seem likely that Americans now properly understand the risks of smoking.

Women who sexually abuse children are just as harmful to their victims as male abusers

August 21, 2017
"That she might seduce a helpless child into sexplay is unthinkable, and even if she did so, what harm can be done without a penis?"

To reduce postoperative pain, consider sleep—and caffeine

August 18, 2017
Sleep is essential for good mental and physical health, and chronic insufficient sleep increases the risk for several chronic health problems.

Despite benefits, half of parents against later school start times

August 18, 2017
Leading pediatrics and sleep associations agree: Teens shouldn't start school so early.

Doctors exploring how to prescribe income security

August 18, 2017
Physicians at St. Michael's Hospital are studying how full-time income support workers hired by health-care clinics can help vulnerable patients or those living in poverty improve their finances and their health.

Schoolchildren who use e-cigarettes are more likely to try tobacco

August 17, 2017
Vaping - or the use of e-cigarettes - is widely accepted as a safer option for people who are already smoking.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.