According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), around 3.5 million sports-related injuries occur yearly in the United States. That includes minor and major injuries, and the number is likely higher since many of these injuries go unreported.
As per the National Athletic Trainers’ Association, around 30 million children participate in organized sports in the U.S. This number has been increasing over the years, likely due to youth sports leagues’ increasing popularity.
Almost all athletes will suffer some kind of sports injury while playing or practicing, especially in contact sports like football and hockey. Let’s talk about some of the most interesting sports injury statistics, how they tend to occur, and where you can go in Austin for world-class orthopedic sports medicine and treatment.
The Most Common Sports Injuries
The most common type of sports injury is a sprain or a strain. A sprain is the tearing or stretching of a ligament (which holds two bones together in a joint), and a sprain is the tearing or stretching of a muscle or a tendon (which attaches a muscle to a bone). More than 600,000 cases occur yearly, and they usually result from a sudden movement or impact.
Other common injuries include:
- Fractures–A break in a bone, which can occur from a direct blow or repetitive-motion stress
- Dislocations–When bone pops out of place in a joint, usually from a fall or collision
- Concussions–A traumatic brain injury that results from a blow to the head
Areas of the Body Most Frequently Injured in Sports
In the United States, the most commonly injured body parts are first the knee, then the ankle, and then the shoulder. According to the National Athletic Trainers’ Association, these three areas account for over 30% of all sports injuries.
Common sports injuries include:
- Torn ACL–The partial or complete tearing of the anterior cruciate ligament (which is located in front of the knee, right behind the kneecap)
- Torn MCL –The partial or complete tearing of the medial collateral ligament (which is located on the inside of the knee, where the knees meet when you stand with your legs together)
- Torn meniscus–The tearing of the C-shaped cartilage in the knee; each knee has two menisci
- Rotator cuff tear – The tearing of the group of muscles and tendons that hold the shoulder in place
- Sprained ankle – The tearing of one or more ligaments of the ankle joint
Over 60% of these injuries happen during training instead of competitions.
Sports that Cause the Most Injuries
The leading cause of sports-related death, although rare, is traumatic brain injury (TBI). An estimated 50% of TBIs are from skating or cycling accidents.
In the United States, the most dangerous sport is football, followed by basketball, baseball, and hockey.
Some key statistics about U.S. sports injuries:
- Football–The leading cause of catastrophic injuries in young men, per the National Center for Catastrophic Sport Injury Research
- Cheerleading–The leading cause of catastrophic injuries in young women, according to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS)
- Soccer–The second-most common sport for concussions (after football), according to the CDC
- Gymnastics–Over 50% of all gymnasts will suffer an injury during their career, per the CDC
Treatment for a Sports Injury in Austin, TX
Sports injuries are a genuine and common occurrence. It’s vital to be aware of the risks before participating in any sport, so you can wear and use the proper gear in order to prevent a sports injury. If you do suffer an injury, seek medical attention as soon as possible.
You can trust the medical team at All-Star Orthopedics of Austin if you need comprehensive treatment for a sports injury here in Austin, Texas. We can give you the compassionate and effective care you need to help you get back to playing your sport.
Call our friendly staff at (512) 346-4933 today to learn about us or to schedule an appointment. You may also fill out our convenient appointment request form to book a consultation with the best orthopedic doctor in Austin. We look forward to serving you!