473 former College gymnasts surveyed

Dave Tilley one of the authors of this study.

Gymnastics is a popular sport with high injury rates, especially at the collegiate level. …

The median age of gymnastics specialization was 8 years [interquartile range = 6-11 years]. The proportion of injuries sustained during college did not significantly differ by specialization age.

A significantly greater proportion of early specializers required surgery for college sports-related injuries (60% vs. 44%; p = 0.02).

Forty-two percent of the respondents reported concussion history, and a greater proportion of those with concussion history reported seeking mental health treatment during college (32% vs. 23%; p = 0.03), and anxiety disorder diagnosis (16% vs. 9%; p = 0.01).

Disordered eating history was reported by 34% of the respondents …

Conclusion: Athletes and clinicians should be aware of the long-term effects of early specialization, concussions, and disordered eating in gymnastics as these issues are common in female collegiate gymnasts.

Health outcomes among former female collegiate gymnasts: the influence of sport specialization, concussion, and disordered eating

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Rick Mc

Career gymnastics coach who loves the outdoors, and the internet.

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