Ice skating

Ice Skaters Suffer More Head Injuries Than Inliners

Ice Makes It Difficult to Break Falls

Planet staff

Ice skaters may suffer less road rash than their inline counterparts. But they make up for it with more head injuries, according to a new study.

The study found that 13 percent of ice skaters who fall hit their heads compared to 3 percent of inline and roller skaters.

The reason is the slipperiness of ice. It protects ice skaters from losing skin when they fall. But it also makes it difficult for skaters to use their arms and hands to break their falls.

"Because ice skating occurs on a low friction surface, attempts to break falls with the arms and hands are often unsuccessful, resulting in the head hitting the ice leading to head and face injuries," the study found.

The study's authors are developing and patenting a new kind of non-slip wrist guard, which they say will "prevent outstretched hands from slipping on the ice during attempts to break a fall."

In the meantime, they suggest that young ice skaters wear hockey-style helmets with face masks.

The study was conducted by the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Columbus Children's Hospital.

(Go to Medical News story.)

(Posted on Jan. 31, 2005)

Related reading

• Go to Medical News story.



Copyright © 2005 by Robert Burnson

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