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Early sports specialisation and the incidence of lower extremity injuries in youth athletes: current concepts

Abstract

Year-round intensive, single-sport training beginning at an young age is an increasingly common trend in the youth athlete population. Early sport specialisation may be ineffective for long-term athletic success and contribute to an increased risk of physical injury and burn-out. The medical community has noted that repetitive movement patterns may occur in non-diversified activity and this may contribute to overuse injury in young athletes. Studies have begun to identify an association between early sport specialisation and lower extremity injuries in the youth athlete population that is independent of training volume. Recent literature has suggested that sport diversification, not specialisation, is a better path for athletic success and minimised lower extremity injury risk.

  • sports medicine
  • sports
  • epidemiology

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