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1.  A PILOT SURVEY ON INJURY AND SAFETY CONCERNS IN INTERNATIONAL SLEDGE HOCKEY 
Objective:
To describe sledge hockey injury patterns, safety issues and to develop potential injury prevention strategies.
Design:
Pilot survey study of international sledge hockey professionals, including trainers, physiotherapists, physicians, coaches and/or general managers.
Setting:
Personal encounter or online correspondence.
Respondents:
Sledge hockey professionals; a total of 10 respondents from the 5 top-ranked international teams recruited by personal encounter or online correspondence.
Main Outcome Measurements:
Descriptive Data reports on sledge athlete injury characteristics, quality of rules and enforcement, player equipment, challenges in the medical management during competition, and overall safety.
Results:
Muscle strains and concussions were identified as common, and injuries were reported to affect the upper body more frequently than the lower body. Overuse and body checking were predominant injury mechanisms. Safety concerns included excessive elbowing, inexperienced refereeing and inadequate equipment standards.
Conclusions:
This paper is the first publication primarily focused on sledge hockey injury and safety. This information provides unique opportunity for the consideration of implementation and evaluation of safety strategies. Safety interventions could include improved hand protection, cut-resistant materials in high-risk areas, increased vigilance to reduce intentional head-contact, lowered rink boards and modified bathroom floor surfacing.
PMCID: PMC3163997  PMID: 21904696
Disabled athlete; Paralympic; sledge hockey

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