Handball, injuries and prevention: what you need to know



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Handball, injuries and prevention: what you need to know

Handball is a millenary sport: the first testimonies come from ancient Rome, practiced by legionaries. Its worldwide diffusion started from Germany, at the end of the nineteenth century, when they began to put unique rules to various games that took place both as training in gymnastics schools, and in popular ones, played during the country fairs.

Since the end of the sixties, handball, in the now consolidated indoor version, spread quickly all over the world, up to rightly returning to the Olympic sports starting from the 1972 Munich Olympics. According to many, it is the second men's sport played in the world, after football, and first among women's team sports.

Preventing injuries in handball is always an important foundation in the sport, as opposed to soccer for the use of reverse limbs. The article Handball injuries and their prevention, published in SpringerLink, explains precisely the injuries in this sport and their prevention.

Here are the highlights:

"Background: Handball is one of the most popular team sports in Germany, as well as one of the most dangerous ones. Injury rates in Germany are higher amongst handball professionals than in soccer, with the knee being the most commonly injured joint.

To prevent injuries, a functional inert stability is necessary, but definitions and objective measures are lacking. Objectives: Establishing valid reference data of functional knee stability in amateur handball players with use of an established test battery giving objective measures METHODS: 261 athletes (f: 130; m: 131), mean age 25.1 ± 5.8 y were screened during the preseason.

The test battery consisted of double and single-leg counter movement jumps, balance tests, agility, parkour, quick feet test and plyometric jumps. Results: Significant differences between males and females were noted in regard to balance scores (favor for females p ≤ 0.001), as well as jump height, agility and speed tests (favor for males [p ≤ 0.002-0.001]).

Conclusion: The noted differences once again bring focus to the interindividual presence of risk factors, because female and male handball athletes have gender-specific ground levels. These attributes have to be considered in further screening and prevention programs, as well as in the context of the return-to-sports decision after injury.

The given data may serve as objective reference measures. Keywords: Athletes; Handball; Injury; Knee joint; Reference values; Return to sport; Trauma."