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Consensus statement on the methodology of injury and illness surveillance in FINA (aquatic sports)
  1. M Mountjoy1,2,3,
  2. A Junge4,5,
  3. J M Alonso6,7,
  4. B Clarsen8,
  5. B M Pluim9,10,
  6. I Shrier11,
  7. C van den Hoogenband2,
  8. S Marks2,12,
  9. D Gerrard2,13,
  10. P Heyns2,
  11. K Kaneoka14,
  12. H P Dijkstra7,
  13. K M Khan7,15
  1. 1Department of Family Medicine, Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
  2. 2Fédération Internationale de Natation (FINA) Sports Medicine Committee, Lausanne, Switzerland
  3. 3International Olympic Committee (IOC), Lausanne, Switzerland
  4. 4Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) Medical Assessment and Research Centre (F-MARC), Zurich, Switzerland
  5. 5Medical School Hamburg (MSH), Germany
  6. 6International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) Medical and Anti-doping Commission, Monte Carlo, Monaco
  7. 7Department of Sports Medicine, Aspetar Orthopaedic and Sports Medicine Hospital, Doha, Qatar
  8. 8Oslo Sports Trauma Research Centre (OSTRC), Oslo, Norway
  9. 9Academic Center of Evidence Based Sports Medicine (ACES), Amsterdam, Netherlands
  10. 10Amsterdam Collaboration for Health and Safety in Sports (ACHSS), Amsterdam, Netherlands
  11. 11Centre for Clinical Epidemiology, Lady Davis Institute for Medical Research, Jewish General Hospital, McGill University, Montreal, Canada
  12. 12Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  13. 13 Department of Medicine, Dunedin School of Medicine, University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand
  14. 14Faculty of Sport Sciences, Waseda University, Tokorozawa, Japan
  15. 15Department of Family Practice, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada
  1. Correspondence to Dr M Mountjoy, Dip Sport Med; FINA c/o Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine, McMaster University Waterloo Regional Campus, 10-B Victoria Street South, Kitchener, Ontario N2G 1C5, Canada; mmsportdoc{at}


Background Injury and illness surveillance in the aquatic disciplines has been conducted during the FINA World Championships and Olympic Games. The development of an aquatic-specific injury and illness surveillance system will improve the quality of the data collected and the development of preventive measures. Our ultimate objective is to enhance aquatic athlete health and performance.

Objective The objective was to refine the injury and illness surveillance protocols to develop aquatic-specific definitions of injury and illness; define aquatic-specific injury location and causation; better describe overuse injuries; regard pre-existing and recurrent injuries; more accurately define aquatic athlete exposures and develop a protocol to capture out-of-competition aquatic athlete health parameters.

Methods FINA compiled an Injury and Illness Surveillance Expert Working Group comprised of international experts to review the scientific literature in the field. A consensus meeting was convened to provide an opportunity for debate, following which recommendations were collated.

Results Aquatic-specific injury and illness surveillance protocols covering both the in-competition and out-of-competition time periods were developed. Definitions for all relevant variables were outlined, and documentation forms for athletes and for clinicians were proposed. Recommendations for the implementation of an injury and illness surveillance system for FINA are presented.

Conclusion The FINA consensus authors recommend ongoing in-competition and out-of-competition surveillance to determine injury and illness trends over time. The implementation of the definitions and methodology outlined in this paper will improve the accuracy and value of injury and illness surveillance, and provide important information for injury prevention.

  • Injury prevention
  • Illness
  • Surveillance
  • Aquatic sports
  • Swimming

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