Women’s Lacrosse Poses High Concussion Risk

Concussions are a type of traumatic brain injury, and they are common among contact sports. When an athlete is jarred or experiences a fall or hit, the brain can move back and forth within the confines of the hard skull, which causes injury to its soft tissues. While it may come as no surprise that football is the sport most likely to cause a concussion among those who participate, a recent survey cited women’s lacrosse as the second most likely sport to put players at risk for this type of injury.

The Study

The study that discovered women’s lacrosse posed a high concussion risk was published in Injury Epidemiology in 2015. In the paper, the authors used data from the Concussion Prevention Initiative, which included 8,905 athletes at the high school and college levels. While more than two-thirds of the concussions recorded occurred among football players, the sport with the second-highest risk for concussions was women’s lacrosse. The other sports included in the study were men’s lacrosse, football, men’s and women’s soccer, and men’s and women’s ice hockey.

The Incidence of Concussions During Lacrosse

Despite the fact that women’s lacrosse prohibits contact between the players and men’s lacrosse does not, women’s lacrosse players still sustained a higher rate of concussions. The study found that while player collisions were the predominant cause of concussions in men’s lacrosse, women’s lacrosse players sustained concussions following contact with an object, such as the ball or stick, in half of concussion cases. Among the women’s lacrosse players who sustained concussions, those in defensive positions were mostly likely to receive a concussion, while goaltenders were the least likely to become concussed.

At Baxter & Walsh Physical Therapy, P.C., we offer targeted physical therapy for a variety of conditions, including sports injuries, post-surgical rehabilitation, and other types of injuries and accidents. You can find out more about treating and preventing common injuries when you visit us online and read through our blog, or call (631) 206-2989 or (516) 826-0116 to reach a physical therapist in Bay Shore or Wantagh.