Aim To study the association between player characteristics, technical components of the game and the risk of match injuries during the 2017 Men’s Handball World Championship.
Methods Team physicians of the participating teams (n=24) were requested to provide injury report forms throughout the Men’s Handball World Championship (France, January 2017). The individual time played, age, number of international matches played and all technical and penalty variables for each player were extracted from the official International Handball Federation (IHF) online database and used as risk factors in a general logistic linear model analysis.
Results Of 387 players, 49 sustained one or more injuries (93 injuries in total). The total incidence of match injuries was 82.1 injuries per 1000 hours (95% CI 66.2 to 100.5), non-time-loss injury incidence was 40.6 injuries per 1000 hours (95% CI 29.3 to 54.9), while time-loss injury incidence was 30.9 injuries per 1000 hours (95% CI 21.5 to 42.9). Multivariate analysis showed that age (OR 1.1, 95% CI 1.02 to 1.18, p=0.011), player position (backs: OR 6.79, 95% CI 2.25 to 20.54, p=0.001; goalkeepers: OR 5.03, 95% CI 1.15 to 21.94, p=0.031) and 2 min suspensions (1–2 times: OR 2.77, 95% CI 1.27 to 6.04, p=0.011; 3 or more times: OR 2.66, 95% CI 1.18 to 6.38, p=0.029) were significant risk factors for getting injured during competition matches.
Conclusion Age, player position (backs, goalkeepers) and 2 min suspensions were associated with match injury. Stricter rule enforcement should be considered to prevent match injuries in elite handball.
- risk factor
- injury prevention
- contact sports
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