Background Little is known about the burden of overuse injuries and illnesses in junior elite ice hockey.
Objective The aim of this study was to describe the prevalence and burden of all health problems in junior elite ice hockey in Norway during one school year.
Design Prospective cohort study.
Setting Elite Sport Academy High Schools in Norway.
Participants 206 male junior ice hockey players.
Interventions (or Assessment of Risk Factors) Players reported all health problems, acute injuries, overuse injuries and illnesses weekly during the 2018/2019 school year (44 weeks) using the Oslo Sports Trauma Research Center Questionnaire on Health Problems.
Main Outcome Measurements Prevalence and burden of acute injuries, overuse injuries and illnesses.
Results Of the players included, 25% (95% CI, 23–27%) reported a health problem at any given time, while 16% (95% CI, 15–17%) experienced health problems with a substantial negative impact on training and performance. Of the total burden of health problems, acute injuries accounted for 42%, overuse injuries 32% and illnesses 25%. The greatest burden for acute injuries was caused by injuries to the hand, knee and ankle, whereas for overuse injuries the most burdensome location was the hip/groin and knee.
Conclusions This study documented that while acute injuries did represent the greatest problem among junior elite ice hockey players, overuse injuries, especially to the knee and hip/groin, also had substantial impact.
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