Surface-related injuries in soccer

Sports Med. 1989 Jul;8(1):56-62. doi: 10.2165/00007256-198908010-00006.


The review of the effects of artificial turf and natural grass on surface-related traumatic injuries in soccer suggests that surfaces with artificial turf produce more abrasion injuries than surfaces with natural grass. Most authors report no significant difference in injury frequencies for the number of traumatic injuries. However, some authors report fewer traumatic injuries on artificial turf, especially after a period of adaptation on the artificial turf. A difference in injury pattern and injury mechanism when playing on different types of surfaces has been suggested, as well as an increased injury risk for frequent alternating between different playing surfaces. The relationship between knee and ankle injuries and the fixation of the foot to the ground is not yet evaluated in soccer. In American football, the severity and incidence of knee and ankle injuries were reported to be significantly lower when using shoes with lower friction properties. However, in American football severe injuries typically occur in collision situations often independent of the surface. Soccer is characterised by sprinting, stopping, cutting and pivoting situations, where shoe-surface relations are essential and frictional resistance must be within an optimal range. Future research should address this compromise between performance and protection.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Athletic Injuries / etiology*
  • Humans
  • Soccer*
  • Sports*