Injuries in high school sports


Liam Flaherty, Bret Belden and Wyatt Farwell

Injuries in high school sports come in all different levels of severity, from minor bruises and abrasions to the possibility of instantaneous or slow and painful death. Each sport comes with its own unique risks. What are the risks for the sport that you play?

With every sport at any level, whether it be football, basketball, baseball, hockey, or soccer comes the possibility of an injury. Depending on the rigor of activity or the style of equipment, certain sports can pose more of a threat than others. When you get down to it, which high school sport really is the most dangerous?

To many, it seems as though football takes the cake as the most dangerous high school sport. With hard hitting collisions, the sport causes plenty of injuries each year. “I sprained my right MCL and have had two concussions” while playing football, said Alex McCelvery ‘17. In McCelvery’s case, he was lucky enough that his injury was recognized early and treated. Often times injuries such as concussions can go unnoticed and untreated. Many take this into consideration when referring to football as the most dangerous sport.

Hockey sustains a dangerous amount of injuries that are extremely damaging to the over 500,000 high school athletes who play, according to USA Hockey. “Hockey is probably the most dangerous high school sport. Have you seen the skates? They could cut you in half.” said Nick McPherson ‘16. Statistics show that in 2014, there were roughly 8,500 ice hockey injuries treated in the emergency room for age groups between 15-18 years. Lack of proper hitting knowledge increases the dangers of high school ice hockey. New athletes that are less skilled in their skating abilities are a threat to experienced players, in the sense that their movements and actions are unpredictable. In extreme cases, players experience devastating, career ending spinal injuries.

Sports that require less contact between players, such as soccer and basketball, typically result in fewer and less severe injuries. While constant, hard-hitting collisions riddle both the football field and hockey rink, less-intense sports such as soccer and basketball feature less violent, injury-inducing collisions. Typically, the more contact that’s involved in a sport, the greater the risk of injury.

Although, in soccer and basketball, injuries aren’t non-existent. The fast-paced action of these games can cause plenty of injuries as well. On the soccer pitch, jostling between players on high speed runs often results in collisions and cause players to take hard falls. Torrey Cook ‘15 knew this scenario when she “broke [her] wrist in the playoff game last year”.

On the court, basketball player Kenny Corsetti ‘19 “fractured [his] foot playing basketball” during a recreation game last year. A sport like basketball, which has a great deal to do with jumping and putting stress on one’s legs, causes many injuries to the lower, frequently-used half. Although not necessarily considered contact sports, both soccer and basketball are activities that can cause a great deal of injury.

For those who are planning or already participating in one of these sports now, it’s important to be informed about the activity and to recognize some of the real risks that are associated with each. There is always a possibility that you could be injured on the court or field.