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Female athletes at higher risk for overuse injuries

ThinkstockPhotos-480586501A study conducted on high school athletes by researchers from the Ohio State University has shown girls are more susceptible to overuse injuries than their male counterparts.

Common overuse injuries like shin splints, stress fractures and tendonitis are familiar terms to most runners. Overuse injuries occur, as the term implies, when an athlete performs the same motion repeatedly (such as a running stride).

Researchers studied over 3,000 injury cases over a seven-year period from 20 different sports. Unsurprisingly, female track athletes had the highest injury rate at 3.82. Lower leg injuries are the most common, followed by knee injuries.

Overuse injuries account for approximately 50 per cent of all athletic injuries and double the number of visits to sports medicine physicians are from overuse injuries than acute trauma. For runners, particularly female ones, this is a reminder to not always move in one direction and to incorporate strength training and plyometrics into their training schedule.