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International Olympic Committee consensus statement: methods for recording and reporting of epidemiological data on injury and illness in sport 2020 (including STROBE Extension for Sport Injury and Illness Surveillance (STROBE-SIIS))
  1. Roald Bahr1,2,
  2. Ben Clarsen1,3,
  3. Wayne Derman4,
  4. Jiri Dvorak5,
  5. Carolyn A Emery6,7,
  6. Caroline F Finch8,
  7. Martin Hägglund9,
  8. Astrid Junge10,11,
  9. Simon Kemp12,13,
  10. Karim M Khan14,15,
  11. Stephen W Marshall16,
  12. Willem Meeuwisse17,18,
  13. Margo Mountjoy19,20,
  14. John W Orchard21,
  15. Babette Pluim22,23,24,
  16. Kenneth L Quarrie25,26,
  17. Bruce Reider27,
  18. Martin Schwellnus28,
  19. Torbjørn Soligard29,30,
  20. Keith A Stokes31,32,
  21. Toomas Timpka33,34,
  22. Evert Verhagen35,
  23. Abhinav Bindra36,
  24. Richard Budgett29,
  25. Lars Engebretsen1,29,
  26. Uğur Erdener29,
  27. Karim Chamari37
  1. 1 Oslo Sports Trauma Research Center, Department of Sports Medicine, Norwegian School of Sport Sciences, Oslo, Norway
  2. 2 Aspetar Orthopaedic and Sports Medicine Hospital, Doha, Qatar
  3. 3 Department of Health Promotion, Norwegian Institute of Public Health, Bergen, Norway
  4. 4 Institute of Sport and Exercise Medicine, Division of Orthopaedic Surgery, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Stellenbosch University, Stellenbosch, South Africa
  5. 5 Spine Unit, Swiss Concussion Center and Swiss Golf Medical Center, Schulthess Clinic, Zurich, Switzerland
  6. 6 Sport Injury Prevention Research Centre, Faculty of Kinesiology, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada
  7. 7 Pediatrics and Community Health Sciences, Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada
  8. 8 School of Medical and Health Sciences, Edith Cowan University, Joondalup, Western Australia, Australia
  9. 9 Department of Medical and Health Sciences, Division of Physiotherapy, Linköping University, Linköping, Sweden
  10. 10 Medical School Hamburg, Hamburg, Germany
  11. 11 Swiss Concussion Centre, Schulthess Clinic, Zurich, Switzerland
  12. 12 Rugby Football Union, London, UK
  13. 13 Department of Epidemiology and Population Health, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, London, UK
  14. 14 Department of Family Practice, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
  15. 15 British Journal of Sports Medicine, London, UK
  16. 16 Injury Prevention Research Center and Department of Epidemiology at the Gillings School of Global Public Health, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA
  17. 17 Sport Injury Prevention Research Centre, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada
  18. 18 National Hockey League, Calgary, Alberta, Canada
  19. 19 Department of Family Medicine (Sport Medicine), McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
  20. 20 FINA Bureau (Sport Medicine), Lausanne, Switzerland
  21. 21 School of Public Health, University of Sydney, New South Wales, Sydney, Australia
  22. 22 Department of Sports Medicine, Royal Netherlands Lawn Tennis Association, Amstelveen, The Netherlands
  23. 23 Amsterdam Collaboration on Health & Safety in Sports (ACHSS), AMC/VUmc IOC Research Center of Excellence, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
  24. 24 Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Pretoria, Hatfield, South Africa
  25. 25 New Zealand Rugby, Wellington, New Zealand
  26. 26 Sports Performance Research Institute New Zealand, AUT University, Auckland, New Zealand
  27. 27 Department of Orthopaedic Surgery and Rehabilitation, University of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois, USA
  28. 28 Sport, Exercise Medicine and Lifestyle Research Institute (SEMLI), University of Pretoria, Hatfield, South Africa
  29. 29 Medical and Scientific Department, International Olympic Committee, Lausanne, Switzerland
  30. 30 Sport Injury Prevention Research Centre, Faculty of Kinesiology, Calgary, Alberta, Canada
  31. 31 Department for Health, University of Bath, Bath, UK
  32. 32 Rugby Football Union, Twickenham, UK
  33. 33 Athletics Research Center, Linköping University, Linköping, Sweden
  34. 34 Centre for Healthcare Development, Region Östergötland, Linköping, Sweden
  35. 35 Amsterdam Collaboration on Health and Safety in Sports, Department of Public and Occupational Health, Amsterdam UMC, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
  36. 36 Athlete Commission, International Olympic Committee, Lausanne, Switzerland
  37. 37 Aspetar Sports Medicine and Orthopedic Hospital, Doha, Qatar
  1. Correspondence to Professor Roald Bahr, Oslo Sports Trauma Research Center, Department of Sports Medicine, Norwegian School of Sport Sciences, 0863 Oslo, Norway; roald{at}


Injury and illness surveillance, and epidemiological studies, are fundamental elements of concerted efforts to protect the health of the athlete. To encourage consistency in the definitions and methodology used, and to enable data across studies to be compared, research groups have published 11 sport-specific or setting-specific consensus statements on sports injury (and, eventually, illness) epidemiology to date. Our objective was to further strengthen consistency in data collection, injury definitions and research reporting through an updated set of recommendations for sports injury and illness studies, including a new Strengthening the Reporting of Observational Studies in Epidemiology (STROBE) checklist extension. The IOC invited a working group of international experts to review relevant literature and provide recommendations. The procedure included an open online survey, several stages of text drafting and consultation by working groups and a 3-day consensus meeting in October 2019. This statement includes recommendations for data collection and research reporting covering key components: defining and classifying health problems; severity of health problems; capturing and reporting athlete exposure; expressing risk; burden of health problems; study population characteristics and data collection methods. Based on these, we also developed a new reporting guideline as a STROBE Extension—the STROBE Sports Injury and Illness Surveillance (STROBE-SIIS). The IOC encourages ongoing in- and out-of-competition surveillance programmes and studies to describe injury and illness trends and patterns, understand their causes and develop measures to protect the health of the athlete. Implementation of the methods outlined in this statement will advance consistency in data collection and research reporting.

  • consensus statement
  • epidemiology
  • injuries
  • illness
  • methodology

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  • Presented at This article has been co-published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine and Orthopaedic Journal of Sports Medicine.

  • Correction notice This article has been corrected since it published Online First. The competing interests statement has been added and figure 1 replaced.

  • Contributors Please see 'Methods' section.

  • Funding The International Olympic Committee has provided funding for the consensus meeting.

  • Competing interests BR receives payment for duties as Editor-in-Chief of the The Orthopaedic Journal of Sports Medicine. KK is the Editor-in-Chief of the British Journal of Sports Medicine.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.

  • Data availability statement No data are available.

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