Little is known about the pattern of injury in short track speed skating.
To investigate the incidence and characteristics of injuries in short track speed skating.
Ninety-five of 150 elite-level skaters (63.3%) were surveyed to collect information on training and competition load as well as on injuries sustained during the 1999-2000 competitive season. Injuries were characterized in terms of anatomic location, type of injury, time loss from training and competition, and circumstance of injury (acute onset during competition, on-ice practice, off-ice training, or insidious onset).
Sixty-one of the 95 skaters (64.2%) reported sustaining at least one injury. The knee, ankle, spine, leg, and groin were the most commonly reported sites of injury. Skaters were also asked to list previous on-ice injuries. The two most common injuries occurring on-ice before the 1999-2000 season were lacerations from the knee down (11.1%) and ankle fractures (10.2%).
The results of this study suggest that there is a high incidence of injury in competitive short track speed skating.