Although shoulder injuries accounted for just 8 percent of all injuries sustained by high school athletes, shoulder injuries were relatively common in predominately male sports such as baseball (18 percent of all injuries), wrestling (18 percent) and football (12 percent). Moreover, boys experienced higher shoulder injury rates than girls, particularly in soccer and baseball/softball.
Player-to-player contact was associated with nearly 60 percent of high school athletes’ shoulder injuries from 2005 through 2007, according to a study published in the online issue of the Journal of Athletic Training and conducted by researchers in the Center for Injury Research and Policy of The Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. This is the first study to examine shoulder injuries across sports in a nationally representative sample of U.S. high school athletes.
“Shoulder injuries were far more likely to occur in football and wrestling than in any other sport,” explained the study’s author Ellen Yard, MPH, research associate in the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. “Shoulder injuries were also three times more likely to occur in competition compared to practice.”