Epidemiology of Injuries in Women Playing Competitive Team Bat-or-Stick Sports: A Systematic Review and a Meta-Analysis Academic Article uri icon


  • BACKGROUND:Team bat-or-stick sports, including cricket, softball and hockey, are popular among women. However, little is known about the injury profile in this population. OBJECTIVE:The aim was to describe the incidence, nature and anatomical location of injuries in bat-or-stick sports played by women in a competitive league. METHODS:This review was prospectively registered (PROSPERO CRD42015026715). CINAHL, MEDLINE, PsycINFO, PubMed, SPORTDiscus were systematically searched from January 2000 to September 2016, inclusive. Peer-reviewed original research articles reporting the incidence, nature and anatomical location of injuries sustained by women aged 18 + years in competitive bat-or-stick sports were included. Two meta-analyses based on injury incidence proportions (injury IP) and injury rates per 1000 person-days of athletic exposure (AE) were performed. RESULTS:A total of 37 studies satisfied the inclusion criteria, and five had low risk of bias. The weighted injury IP was 0.42 [95% confidence interval (CI) 0.39-0.45]. The weighted injury rate was 6.12 (95% CI 6.05-6.18) overall, and greater in games [15.79 (95% CI 15.65-15.93)] than in practice [3.07 (95% CI 2.99-3.15)]. The ankle was the most commonly injured anatomical location, followed by the hand (including wrist and fingers), knee and head. Soft tissue and ligament injuries were most common types of injuries. CONCLUSION:Injury prevention in women's sports is a novel and emerging field of research interest. This review highlights that injury incidence is high among female bat-or-stick players, but little information is known about direct causal mechanisms. This review clearly establishes the need for enhancements to injury data collection. Without this information, it will not be possible to develop evidence-based injury prevention interventions.

publication date

  • 2018