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August 1988

Soccer Injuries and Their Relation to Physical Maturity

Author Affiliations

From the Division of Orthopedics and Sports Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle (Mr Backous and Dr Smith); the Department of Clinical Investigation (Mr Backous and Dr Friedl) and the Orthopaedic Surgery Service (Dr Parr), Madigan Army Medical Center, Tacoma, Wash; and the Department of Physical Education and Athletics, Seattle Pacific University (Mr Carpine).

Am J Dis Child. 1988;142(8):839-842. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1988.02150080045019

• A prospective study of injuries encountered during participation in a summer soccer camp for youths aged 6 through 17 years revealed an injury incidence of 10.6 per 1000 hours for girls (107 injuries in 458 girls) and 7.3 per 1000 hours for boys (109 injuries in 681 boys). For both sexes, the incidence of injury increased at age 14 years. One certified athletic trainer (W.D.C.) assessed and documented all injuries during the course of the study. Seventy percent of injuries involved the lower extremities. Contusions represented 35.2%, strains 27.8%, sprains 19.4%, and fractures and dislocations 2% of all reported injuries. The ankle was the most frequent site of injury in both sexes. Quadriceps strain was a common injury in boys. The boys with the highest incidence of injury were tall (>165 cm) and had a weak grip (<25 kg), suggesting that skeletally mature but muscularly weak boys may be more susceptible to injury while playing soccer with peers of the same chronological age.

(AJDC 1988;142:839-842)