Introduction: The causes and events related to skateboarding injuries have been widely documented. However, little is known about longboard-related injuries. With five deaths linked to longboarding in the United States and Canada in 2012, some cities are already considering banning the practice. This study compared the types and causes of longboarding-related injuries to those associated with skateboarding.
Methods: We conducted a retrospective cohort study, using an emergency-based surveillance system, on patients under the age of 18 who had been injured while longboarding or skateboarding between 2006 and 2010.
Results: A total of 287 longboarding and 4198 skateboarding cases were identified. There were more females in the longboarding group (18.8%) than in the skateboarding one (10.7%, p < 0.002). All the injured longboarders were older than 10 years of age while a fifth of the injured skateboarders were under the age of 11. Longboarders' injuries occurred mainly on streets and roads (75.3% vs. 34.3% in skateboarders, p < 0.000) and rarely in skate parks (1.4% vs. 26.4% in skateboarders, p < 0.000). Longboarders suffered twice as many injuries to their heads and necks (23.3% vs. 13.1%, p < 0.000) and twice as many severe neurological traumas (8.6 vs. 3.7%, p < 0.000) while skateboarders suffered more injuries to their lower extremities (33.7% vs. 24.7%, p < 0.002).
Conclusion: Longboarding is associated with a different pattern of injuries than skateboarding. Because longboarders suffer more intracranial injuries, the importance of helmet use should be especially strongly reinforced.
Keywords: Accidental falls/statistics & numerical data*; Adolescent; Athletic injuries/epidemiology; Skating/injuries*.
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