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What Are the Most Common Pickleball Injuries?

News Stacie Townsend 04-24-2020

Have you ever been injured playing pickleball? According to a recent study of pickleball-related injuries treated by emergency departments in the United States, pickleball injuries have been on the rise in recent years (Forrester, M., “Pickleball-Related Injuries Treated in Emergency Departments”, The Journal of Emergency Medicine, November 30, 2019, pp. 1-5).

    Year Annual Estimated Number of Pickleball-Related Injuries Treated in Emergency Departments
    Pre-2013  Between 0 and 462
    2013 688
    2014 1391
    2015 4359
    2016 4712
    2017 6072

    This rise reflected in the above table could be attributed to the rapid rise of the sport of pickleball in recent years – in other words, more people playing pickleball equates to more pickleball-related injuries.

    Of these pickleball-related injuries, the most common was a strain/sprain (28.7%) or a fracture (27.7%), and the most common area of injury was to the lower extremity (32.0%). Injuries related to the upper extremity accounted for 25.4% of injuries, and injuries to the head/neck accounted for 16.9% of injuries. Further, the vast majority of pickleball-related injuries treated in emergency departments resulted in the patient being released after examination and treatment (88.0%), which shows that the majority of injuries were not serious enough to cause hospitalization.

    Like most sports, there is a risk of injury when playing pickleball. Have you ever been injured on the pickleball court? What precautions do you take when playing pickleball to prevent injury? Share with us in the comments below!

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