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The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 2021 Sep 21

DOI: 10.23736/S0022-4707.21.12903-2

Copyright © 2021 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

Impact of COVID-19 lockdown on the epidemiology of soccer muscle injuries in Italian Serie A professional football players

Nicola MAROTTA 1, Alessandro DE SIRE 1 , Alessandra GIMIGLIANO 2, Andrea DEMECO 1, Lucrezia MOGGIO 1, Andrea VESCIO 3, Teresa IONA 4, Antonio AMMENDOLIA 1

1 Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Unit, Department of Medical and Surgical Sciences, University of Catanzaro Magna Graecia, Catanzaro, Italy; 2 Chief Medical Officer, ASST Fatebenefratelli-Sacco, Milan, Italy; 3 Section of Orthopedics and Traumatology, Department of General Surgery and Medical Surgical Specialties, A.O.U. Policlinico-Vittorio Emanuele, University of Catania, Catania, Italy; 4 Department of Experimental and Clinical Medicine, University of Catanzaro Magna Graecia, Catanzaro, Italy


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OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the influence that COVID-19 lockdown had on the epidemiology of soccer musculoskeletal injuries during 2019/2020 Italian First Football League Serie A in professional football players.
METHODS: In this retrospective study we analyzed records from media-based platform (Trasfermarkt, https://www.transfermarkt.com), describing the epidemiology of muscle injuries before and after the first COVID-19 lockdown phases in Italian professional football players. We also classified the severity of the injury as the number of missing days from participation.
RESULTS: We assessed a lower prevalence of post-lockdown injuries, albeit showing a similar injury rate at 1000 game-hours (pre-lockdown: 16.9 [13.0-20.7], post-lockdown: 15.5 [9.9-21.1]; RR: 0.92 [0.46-1.8]). All risk ratios for injury rate were not significantly different (p> .05) between pre- and post-lockdown.
CONCLUSIONS: The incidence of muscle injuries has not significantly changed after the first COVID-19 lockdown in Italian professional soccer players. Recognizing injury rates might be crucial for physician to evaluate adequate preventive measures.


KEY WORDS: COVID-19; Muscle injury; Serie A; Football; Return to play

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