Magazine article USA TODAY

Violent Collisions Cause Most Hockey Injuries

Magazine article USA TODAY

Violent Collisions Cause Most Hockey Injuries

Article excerpt

Body checking--a hockey player slamming into a competitor at high speed--causes most injuries in college games, according to a Ball State University, Muncie, Ind., study. A survey of reported injuries from seven teams in the Eastern College Athletic Conference and the Hockey East conference over a three-year period found that 65% were caused by checking.

The study's purpose was to explore the relationships of position, mechanism of injury, type of injury, and days lost, notes Terry Schurr, assistant director emeritus of university computing services. The other researcher was Michael Ferrara, a former Ball State exercise science professor now at the University of Georgia, Athens.

"Enforcement of the rules should be stricter, especially those rules relating to charging and boarding," Schurr maintains. "We found that direct impact with another athlete, the ice, or the boards accounted for most of the injuries. These caused the athlete to miss at least one week of practice or competition."

Board impact has been a major concern for years as a direct or indirect mechanism of injury, but little research has been done in the area, he indicates. "The potential forces on impact are staggering when considering high skating speeds, depending on skill level and sliding speeds. …

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