Registry study links gender, skiing and snowboarding ability to injury rates

Female skiers and snowboarders had more knee injuries than male athletes, but fewer shoulder injuries.

Women were twice as likely to suffer knee injuries while skiing or snowboarding than men, according to a study of ski and snowboard registry data.

Although the men studied had more shoulder injuries than the women, women had a 31% knee injury rate among the 8,547 skiers recorded in the Norwegian Ski Lift Association database registry during the 2008 to 2009 and 2009 to 2010 winter seasons. The rate was twice as high as the 15% rate of knee injuries for men recorded in the same time period.

“The higher prevalence of knee injuries and lower prevalence of shoulder injuries in females compared to males were significant both for skiers and boarders, and also when relating to skiing ability,” Arne Ekeland, MD, PhD, said when he presented the results.

Alpine skiers had more knee injuries (27%) than the injuries snowboarders had (9%), however, wrist injuries accounted for 25% of injuries in snowboarders compared to skiers, who had a 5% wrist injury rate.

Seventy percent of the skiers and snowboarders studied wore a helmet, however, “the prevalence of head injuries has dropped less than expected,” Ekeland said.

“Head injuries with helmets need less physician and hospital admission than those without helmets,” he said.

Ekeland and colleagues also discovered that the prevalence of skiing injuries varied according to the athlete’s skill level and type of injury. They found that expert skiers were more likely to sustain head and shoulder injuries than beginners, but wrist and knee injuries were more common in beginners. – by Jeff Craven

Reference:
Ekeland A. Paper #FP29-442. Presented at: European Society of Sports Traumatology, Knee Surgery and Arthroscopy Congress; May 2-5, 2012; Geneva.
For more information:
Arne Ekeland, MD, PhD, can be reached at Martina Hansens Hospital, Postboks 23, N-1355 Baerum Postterminal, Norway; email: arne.ekeland@mhh.no.
Disclosure: Ekeland has no relevant financial disclosures.

Women were twice as likely to suffer knee injuries while skiing or snowboarding than men, according to a study of ski and snowboard registry data.

Although the men studied had more shoulder injuries than the women, women had a 31% knee injury rate among the 8,547 skiers recorded in the Norwegian Ski Lift Association database registry during the 2008 to 2009 and 2009 to 2010 winter seasons. The rate was twice as high as the 15% rate of knee injuries for men recorded in the same time period.

“The higher prevalence of knee injuries and lower prevalence of shoulder injuries in females compared to males were significant both for skiers and boarders, and also when relating to skiing ability,” Arne Ekeland, MD, PhD, said when he presented the results.

Alpine skiers had more knee injuries (27%) than the injuries snowboarders had (9%), however, wrist injuries accounted for 25% of injuries in snowboarders compared to skiers, who had a 5% wrist injury rate.

Seventy percent of the skiers and snowboarders studied wore a helmet, however, “the prevalence of head injuries has dropped less than expected,” Ekeland said.

“Head injuries with helmets need less physician and hospital admission than those without helmets,” he said.

Ekeland and colleagues also discovered that the prevalence of skiing injuries varied according to the athlete’s skill level and type of injury. They found that expert skiers were more likely to sustain head and shoulder injuries than beginners, but wrist and knee injuries were more common in beginners. – by Jeff Craven

Reference:
Ekeland A. Paper #FP29-442. Presented at: European Society of Sports Traumatology, Knee Surgery and Arthroscopy Congress; May 2-5, 2012; Geneva.
For more information:
Arne Ekeland, MD, PhD, can be reached at Martina Hansens Hospital, Postboks 23, N-1355 Baerum Postterminal, Norway; email: arne.ekeland@mhh.no.
Disclosure: Ekeland has no relevant financial disclosures.