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Historically, epidemiology researchers have identified bespoke units of measurement to express each sport’s injury narrative. In 2009, respected industry professionals suggested that tennis injuries be reported per 1000 player-hours rather than athletic exposures (such as 1000 matches) due to large variations in the time component of such exposures.1 This goes some way to addressing the lack of uniformity in tennis injury data, which McCurdie et al2 have identified as the most significant challenge to understanding injury in elite tennis. However, given the streams of data now available, it seems timely to revisit whether this recommended choice of exposure remains as pertinent as it once was.
Gescheit et al3 recently highlighted how the choice of exposure can influence study conclusions. For example, when comparing female muscle injury rates using game exposures (strongly correlated to match duration) versus set exposures at the Australian Open between 2011 and 2016, they found 14% variation in the number of reported injuries …
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