When Olympic athletes compete at such an advanced level, there is always the inherent risk of injury.
Some sports are riskier than others, and some injuries can be career ending. We invited Orthopedic Surgeon Dr. Chris Kweon from UW Medicine to give us insight on the injuries Olympic athletes face.
Dr. Kweon says the most dangerous sports are all aerial sports, including halfpipe snowboarding. The reason is those sports have the potential for spectacular spills and falls that can lead to traumatic injury. Surprisingly, he says ice and speed skating and Nordic events seem to be less risky.
Luckily, Dr. Kweon says in most cases with the help of therapy, treatment, and surgery the athlete can recover and return to their sport.
Amateur athletes run a similar risk during the winter sports season. Dr. Kweon has a few tips for amateur athletes.
First, he says what we see on television are the highest-level athletes in the world, so don't try to imitate them.
Secondly, proper conditioning for any sport can prevent almost any injury.
There is more information on types of injuries and therapies on the UW Sports Medicine homepage.
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