Injuries in artistic gymnastic elite adolescent male and female athletes

J Back Musculoskelet Rehabil. 2002 Jan 1;16(4):145-51. doi: 10.3233/bmr-2002-16405.


Objectives: The purpose of this study was to record the incidence of Sport Injuries (acute and overuse syndromes) in Greek artistic gymnasts in relation to sex, age, event and exercise phase.

Methods: 187 Greek elite artistic gymnastic athletes (100 male and 87 female athletes) participating in Greek artistic gymnastic championship involving all age-related categories, were observed on a weekly basis for a year. The athletes consisted of the pre-national team that was chosen to prepare for the next Olympic games.

Results: 147 (61.5%)acute injuries and 93 (38.5%) overuse syndromes were recorded. The most common anatomical location of injury was the ankle (110 cases, 46%), followed by the knee (63 cases, 26.2%). According to the results, the rate which involved mild injuries was 26.8% (64 cases, 34 males, 30 females) moderate injuries was 44% (106 cases, 59 males, 48 females), major injuries was 29% (70 cases, 38 males, 31 females). For the total sport injuries recorded, the injury incidence on the "floor" and especially during "landing phase", were statistically significant.

Conclusions: Artistic gymnastics predisposes to acute injuries, by its nature, but up to 70% are mild and moderate. Special attention needs to be given during "floor exercises", especially on landing phase.