While the injury risk for recreational skiers has been well documented based on prospective injury recording systems, there is almost no data published on the injury pattern and injury risk for competitive alpine skiers. Recent data on professional skiers competing in diverse disciplines from downhill to slalom is limited to two single-event studies.
The aim of this study has therefore been to describe the risk of injury and the injury pattern among male and female competitive World Cup alpine skiers during the competitive season.
We performed retrospective interviews with all World Cup alpine skiers from 10 nations at the end of the 2006-07 and 2007-08 winter seasons and recorded all acute injuries occurring during the 4.5-month competitive season. If an athlete was not present, we interviewed their coaches or medical personnel.
We outlined the interview form as a week-by-week schedule of the World Cup season to make it easy for the athletes to remember back. If an injury was recorded, information regarding the injured body part, the injury type, severity and a specific diagnosis were collected.
This project is part of the FIS Injury Surveillance System.
This study will increase our knowledge of injuries to World Cup alpine skiers and be an important first step to try to reduce the number of injuries among our elite skiers.