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Training risk factors associated with wrestling injury
  1. S Stanev1,
  2. E Dimitrova2
  1. 1Department of Wrestling, National Sports Academy, Sofia, Bulgaria
  2. 2Department of Kinesitherapy, National Sports Academy, Sofia, Bulgaria


Introduction Wrestling is strength sport that requires a large amount of muscle stamina superior flexibility, control and intensive training. The incidence of traumatic and overuse injury is high.1 2 The purpose of this study is to determine injury risk factors associated with wrestling training.

Methods 120 (male and female) wrestling students aged 18–26.5 years were recruited from National Sports Academy. We retrieved through injury survey, information regarding chronic injuries, most recent wrestling related injuries as well as treatments, training history and awareness of injury prevention strategies. Risk factors were analysed by Pearson's correlation, ANOVA and t tests.

Results The results indicate that 45.8% of wrestlers had sustained an injury within the past 6 months. The majority of wrestlers (52.5%) reported being affected by chronic injuries at the time of the survey. Age of onset for wrestling-related and chronic injuries averaged 15 and 17 years. The knee and ankle3 were the most common sites of injury (35%). Arms, shoulders, and hands injuries account for 20% of all injuries. The majority of participants (82%) who required treatment for their most recent wrestling-related injuries consulted a physiotherapist.4 Two of the significant risk factors for injuries were training over 8 h per week (p<0.001) and the training methodology.

Conclusions An individual training threshold may exist for wrestlers, which if exceeded, increases the risk of injuries. In freestyle wrestling these injuries most commonly affect the knee and ankle. A well-planned weekly training load may reduce injuries. As participation in sport activity does not increase injury risk, cross-training may improve these athletes’ fitness during competition period. Physiotherapists and coaches have a role in developing such a training program.

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