Fifteen years of amateur boxing injuries/illnesses at the United States olympic training center

J Athl Train. Winter 1993;28(4):330-4.


We examined the incidence of health problems in elite-level amateur boxing athletes who sparred, trained, or competed at the United States Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado from January 1, 1977 through June 30, 1992. We think this is the first study to examine both injuries and illnesses in a population of elite-level athletes. We collected data on 1,776 reported problems (1219 injuries, 557 illnesses) from standard medical report forms completed by the permanent and volunteer sports medicine staff. We classified the information based on type, body region, location, description, and occurrence. There were significant differences between the frequency of injuries and illnesses and between the classifications and regions for each type of problem. Collectively, serious injuries represented only a relatively small percentage (6.1%) of all problems. We concluded that illnesses comprised a small but important portion of problems, that most illnesses involved respiratory tract infections (71%), that there is only a small risk for serious injury, and that injuries occur in a hierarchy of upper extremity (441, 25%), head/face (344, 19%), lower extremity (267, 15%), and spinal column (167, 9%) for amateur boxers.