Suffering accidents is an implicit risk in each of the activities we carry out daily. It can happen at home, at work or, of course, by practicing some sport. But which are the most dangerous ones?
When it is necessary to evaluate which sport generates the most injuries, it is important to compare the characteristics of each one and the injury frequency index that characterizes it.
What is the injury frequency index? It is the average number of accidents that happen every thousand hours of practicing an activity.
Its purpose is to establish the “dangerousness” of each discipline. However, it is essential to consider one factor: if we do any sport, injuries will come sooner or later. No exception. Although some sports are more dangerous than others for obvious reasons.
If a beginner changes sports regularly he shouldn’t risk skating or boxing without first having acquired a refined technique. These, as well as other direct contact sports such as rugby, or at risk of falls such as cycling, are often a source of injury.
What is the sport that causes the most injuries?
Starting from the sport with the highest injury frequency index, we offer the following list to clarify which sport causes the most injuries.
Rugby has an injury rate of 17 per thousand hours of play. It is a large number, which is understandable given the characteristics of this discipline.
Direct contact, added to the particularity of the footwear, makes bruises and ligament problems habitual. In rugby, as well as in football, shoes with iron studs at the base are used, which makes friction with the ground. When the athlete rotates his body, injuries can occur.
It is not a popular sport. However, squash is at the root of many back injuries, heart problems due to its noticeable intensity, and muscle problems.
It is played in a very small space, at a very high speed and with constant changes of direction. In addition, the ball is small and can hit the players’ eyes. This set of features results in 52% of its practitioners suffering at least one injury per year.
According to the majority, it is sport that generates the most injuries. Boxing and other combat sports pose great risks of minor injuries, such as bruises or cuts; or other more serious ones, such as broken ribs, internal bleeding, and brain damage.
Given their exposure to these problems, organizations such as the American Pediatric Association have openly called for a ban on this sport in teenagers. Similarly, the Sant Joan de Déu hospital discourages its practice in children and young people.
Basketball combines some factors that can induce different types of body damage. First, its high physical demand can cause muscle problems.
Second, sudden changes in speed and direction in confined spaces can cause distortion and strain. Finally, physical contact and the impact caused by jumps should also be considered. The so-called “jumper’s knee” is a common problem among basketball and volleyball players.
Because of these reasons, and according to the publications of magazines specializing in sports medicine, basketball has an injury rate of 5.2 per thousand hours. This, compared to the other sports on this list, does not highlight too high a risk.
The racing is another sport that generates several injuries. On average, 50% of runners suffer an injury over a year. The accident rate of this discipline is between 2.5 and 12.1 accidents per thousand hours of competition. The knees are usually the most affected part of the body.
Of course, we cannot leave the sport preferred by so many people off the list. Football is a sport that generates more injuries in professionals in the amateurs. The accident rate is between 12.7 and 68.7 per thousand hours of competition.
Nonetheless, in the case of training and amateur athletes, the numbers decrease considerably. In these cases, the probability of injury is between 2.3 and 7.6.
We include this discipline because, due to isolated accidents, it has a bad reputation. The reality is that it has an injury rate of 3.1 per thousand hours of training. This indicates that it is a fairly safe sport.
However, to maintain health during practice, the progressivity of the work is fundamental, both in technique and in intensity. In addition, having an instructor who can help beginners in this activity will avoid accidents.
Other sports with specific injuries
In addition to the sports mentioned, handball, tennis and golf may also be included. These, although not so risky in terms of injury, can cause typical problems due to their technique. Therefore, elbow injuries are very common in tennis, while back and shoulder injuries are common in golf.
On the other hand, cyclists, handball players, and volleyball players often suffer from knee injuries. The intensity and the continuous movement in the first case and the continuous jumps in the last ones produce a set of circumstances difficult for the body to tolerate.
In conclusion, we can establish that rugby is cataloged as the sport that generates the most injuries. And the latter is followed by squash and, surprisingly, by running. Although it is difficult to establish methods to prevent these injuries, it is possible to have good physical preparation and, above all, adequate technique when practicing a sport with a certain frequency.