Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
ISSN: 1303 - 2968   
Ios-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Androit-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
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©Journal of Sports Science and Medicine (2023) 22, 748 - 759   DOI: https://doi.org/10.52082/jssm.2023.748

Review article
Exploring the Epidemiology of Injuries in Athletes of the Olympic Winter Games: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis
Wanli Zang1, Mingqing Fang2, Xianzuo Zhang3, Ningkun Xiao4, Su Wang5, Liang Mu6,7, 
Author Information
1 Postgraduate School, University of Harbin Sport, Harbin, China
2 Xiangya Hospital, Central South University, Changsha, China
3 Department of orthopedics, the first affiliated hospital of USTC, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei, China
4 Institute of Chemical Engineering, Department of Immunochemistry, Ural Federal University, Yekaterinburg, Russia
5 Department of Sports Science, University of Harbin Sport, Harbin, China
6 Postdoctoral Research Station, Harbin sport University, Harbin, China
7 Winter Olympic College, Harbin sport University, Harbin, China

Liang Mu
‚úČ Winter Olympic College, Harbin sport university, Harbin, China
Email: kevin_icestock@163.com
Publish Date
Received: 19-06-2023
Accepted: 06-11-2023
Published (online): 01-12-2023
 
 
ABSTRACT

This study sought to provide a comprehensive assessment of the incidence of sports injuries among athletes participating in the Olympic Winter Games and to investigate contributing factors. We gathered injury data from athletes participating in the recent four Olympic Winter Games, incorporating details on the sports event, sex, injury location, and type. Through a meta-analysis, we calculated the injury incidence rates for each sport and examined the influence of sex and the type of sport on these incidence rates. Out of 11,197 registered athletes, we documented 1,304 sports injuries. The sports events with the highest injury rates were freestyle skiing, snowboarding, alpine skiing, bobsleigh, and ice hockey, with the most frequent injury locations being the knees, thoracic/lumbar/back regions, and the wrist/hand/fingers. Contusions, hematomas, and bruises were the most prevalent injuries, followed by strains (including muscle rupture, tearing, or tendon rupture) and sprains (covering dislocations, subluxations, and ligament ruptures). In the Olympic Winter Games, events such as freestyle skiing, snowboarding, alpine skiing, bobsleigh, and ice hockey pose a particularly high risk. Predominant injury sites include the knee, spine/back, and wrist and hand, with injuries ranging from contusions and hematomas to strains and sprains. For effective injury prevention, it is crucial to emphasize proper medical resource allocation, specialized training for medical personnel, and meticulous venue maintenance.

Key words: Olympic winter games, sports injury, athlete, epidemiology


           Key Points
  • Athletes in the Olympic Winter Games often face high injury rates, with a diverse spectrum of injury types, including instances of severe injuries.
  • It is noteworthy that freestyle skiing, snowboarding, alpine skiing, bobsleigh, and ice hockey have the highest injury rates among all the sports evaluated.
  • Commonly injured areas include the knee, thoracic/lumbar spine/back, and wrist, hand, and fingers. The predominant injuries encountered are contusions, hematomas, strains, and sprains.
  • Emphasis on high-risk events is pivotal in sports training and medical care. Tactical allocation of medical resources, enhancement of targeted training for medical personnel, and strict inspection and maintenance of competition venues are paramount to decrease athletes' injury risks.
 
 
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