Fiona Wilson, Conor Gissane, Ciaran Simms, John Gormley., A 12 month prospective cohort study of injury in international rowers., British Journal of Sports Medicine, 44, 2010, 207-214
British Journal of Sports Medicine; 44;
Objective: In this study, the injury incidence and
association with type and volume of training in
international rowers were described.
Design: A prospective cohort design was used over a 12-
Patients: 20 international rowers who were competing
as part of the Irish Amateur Rowing Union squad system.
Methods: The rowers were interviewed monthly, and
data were collected regarding their training and
competition exposure as well as their injury experience.
Results: A mean injury rate of 3.67 per 1000 exposure
hours was reported with a total of 44 injuries reported in a
12-month period. The mean number of injuries sustained
per athlete was 2.2 (1.24) over the 12-month period. The
area where the greatest number of injuries were reported
was the lumbar spine (31.82% of total injuries, 95% CI 20
to 50) (fig 2) followed by the knee (15.91% of total
injuries, 95% CI 10 to 30) and the cervical spine (11.36%
of total injuries, 95% CI 5 to 24). Half of the injuries (22
injuries, 50% of total reported injuries) were to the spine
(x2=30.8, df=9, p=0.0003). Ergometer training load
was the most significantly associated with injury risk
Conclusion: International rowers are at higher risk of
injury than most non-contact sports and some contact
sports. The high risk of lumbar spine injury and the
significant association of high volume of ergometer
training merit further research to reduce time and
competition lost to injury.
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