THE RATE of injuries – including torn ACLs and concussion – decreased across the competition in the 2019 NAB AFLW season.
Knee injuries affected a variety of players across the competition, from superstar midfielder Erin Phillips, young guns Nina Morrison and Chloe Scheer to debutants Shae Sloane and Brianna Moyes, but the number of torn ACLs actually dropped 18 per cent year on year.
In figures presented to the AFLW clubs and AFL doctors on Wednesday as part of the AFLW Injury Report, there was an average of 0.9 new ACL injuries per club, down from 1.1 in 2018.
There were 5.1 ACL injuries suffered per 1000 player hours, which the AFL said was consistent with female athlete ACL data worldwide.
The 2019 AFLW concussion audit – which includes concussions even if matches weren't missed – saw concussions drop 33 per cent from 2018 to 2019, an incidence rate of 17.2 to 11.5 per 1000 player hours.
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The average injury prevalence was 17.8 matches missed per club, a decrease of 3.5 since 2018.
"The health and safety of our players is a major priority for the AFL and we will continue to research ways of reducing injury rates and implement the best practice for injury reduction, management and recovery," AFL head of women's football Nicole Livingstone said.
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"While it is encouraging to see a drop in both rate of concussions and ACL injuries, they still remain our priority focus regarding prevention.
"As a contact sport, injuries are unfortunately part of Australian Football. Our aim is to continue to provide players with a safe environment and support ongoing research into injury prevention in order to benefit the game across all levels."
Click here to view the full 2019 AFLW Injury Report