CHEERLEADING & INJURY
Though cheerleaders are known for their flashy outfits, athletic routines, and toned, nubile bodies, less attention has been paid to their injuries. A January 2006 report in Pediatrics showed that between 1990 and 2003, 208,800 children aged 5 to 18 were seen in emergency rooms for cheerleading-related injuries: 52.4% of the accidents were strains and sprains, 18.4% involved soft tissues, 16.4% were fractures and dislocations, 3.8% were lacerations or avulsions (tearings or detachments), and 3.5% were concussions and closed head injuries (5.5% were "other," such as dental injuries, hemorrhage, or crushing). The number of injuries increased 110% in the years studied. In response, a national database to track cheerleading injuries is being developed, in part to determine the most dangerous stunts. Thus far, it seems probably that the human pyramid and the basket toss are most likely to imperil participants.
Noël Coward (1899-1973)