NFL Football Injuries
NFL football injuries are becoming more of a concern, but what would the world be like without football? I shutter to think how life would be if I had no team to pull for every Sunday. No Fantasy Football Draft to commission, and no reason to lose my voice from screaming during each game. Sure, my grass would get cut more often, and I would spend more time doing constructive things… But during football season, none of this is of any importance.
I played football back in the day and knew from experience the kind of beating one can take. Of course, being a 150 pound running back/linebacker didn’t help. Watching some the hits these guys can take makes me cringe at times, now more that I am a Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation physician.
In the occurrence rate of NFL football injuries, I didn’t realize how many everyday football athletes there are. According to the American Journal of Sports Medicine, there were over 1 million high school football players and 60,000 in college.
Studies reporting NFL injuries football injuries are slim, but I came across an interesting study in the American Journal of Sports Medicine that revealed information on the number and types of injuries sustained during the NFL training camp, including preseason games. Specifically, researchers collected injury data during training camp from 1 NFL team each year for 10 years. Out of approximately 90 players in camp each year, an average of 73 injuries (58 – 109) occurred each year, with an average 6.4 days of practice missed per injury. More injuries were noted, understandably, during the first two weeks of practice and preseason games.
The most common NFL football injuries were knee sprains, hamstring strains and contusions (bruises). Muscle strains were more common in practice, and concussions, contusions, sprains, fractures and dislocations were more common in games. Muscle strains and joint sprains were the most common of all types of NFL football injuries.
As far as positions are concerned, tight ends and defensive secondary players had the highest risk, while quarterbacks, punters and kickers. Defensive players were more likely to get hurt than offensive players.
This data goes to show the importance of pre- preseason conditioning to decrease the risk of injuries most likely during the first two weeks of training camp. Preventative muscle strengthening and stretching programs must be instituted at all levels from little league to the professional level. Further, programs must be position based to reduce injuries most likely for those particular positions.
Thanks to this study for mapping this out.
I tell you one thing… I’ll take the job as the punter…