Researchers recently reported in the the September issue of Pediatrics that injuries in physical education classes at schools around the country have jumped 150% over an 11-year period.
The researchers speculated that schools are attempting to combat the growing incidence of obesity among children with more physical education classes, which increases the risk of injury. At the same time, there are fewer school nurses to treat injuries on the spot, which means more trips to the emergency room.
Boys' injuries were more likely to involve the head, and were more likely to involve a laceration or fracture. Also, boys' injuries were more likely a result of contact with a person or structure. In contrast, girls' injuries were more likely to be in lower extremities, and were more often were strains and sprains. As a result, of the students who needed to be hospitalized for their injuries, 75.5% were boys.
Most gym class injuries occurred during the following sports activities: running, basketball, football, volleyball, soccer, and gymnastics.
Read more about the study.