While cheerleaders have a low injury rate compared to other high school sports, accidents that do occur may be more likely to result in a concussion, a new study found.
The study, published in the journal Pediatrics, found that cheerleaders may have fewer minor injuries because there is less athlete-athlete contact than in other sports.
“Although injury rates are low, when injuries do occur in cheerleading they tend to be more severe than when injuries occur in other sports (i.e. they tend to be concussions, fractures, etc.),” lead study author Dustin Curry told Fox News. “That may be because cheerleaders, due to the nature of the sport, are more likely to have falls from elevation—for example, flyers during stunts—or to land awkwardly or be struck by another athlete landing awkwardly—for example, bases during stunts.”
The study, which was conducted using data collected by the National High School Sports-Related Inury Surveillance Study from 2009 through 2014, found 793 cheerleader injuries out of 1.1 million practices or competitions with a potential for injuries. That injury rate is 63% lower than all other high school sports combined, according to Fox. Concussions accounted for
Concussions were the most common injury for cheerleaders in the survey, accounting for 31% of injuries. The most common injuries after that were ligament sprains, muscle strains and fractures.