Research: More sports injuries occur on artificial turf

Athletes have a better chance of getting hurt playing on artificial turf than on natural grass, according to a study done by television program Radar. Athletes running on grass have a 27 percent chance of getting hurt. On turf there is a 44 percent chance.

"The biggest difference is in the damping, which is a lot less on artificial turf." according to trainer and exercise physiologist Raymond Verheijen. "Particularly the joints suffer from that."

Some 7 thousand people participated in the Radar study. 40 percent of them sustained abrasions or even open wounds while playing their sport and 35 percent sustained muscle injuries. 31 percent of respondents indicated that they sustained abrasions more often on turf than on grass. According to Radar, it amounts to 44 percent of people playing on turf reported such injuries, compared to 27 of people sporting on grass. There was no significant difference between te number of muscle injuries between the two fields.

"studies were done on the abrasion sensitivity of the fields." a spokesperson for football association KNVB said to the program in reaction. "This showed that there are no more injuries on natural grass than on artificial turfs and vice versa. But there are different injuries. In addition, artificial turf is continuously in development. Materials are developed that make artificial turf look more than natural grass, is more sustainable and causes fewer injuries. At the initiative of the KNVB, governments, municipalities and artificial turf developers will soon discuss the further implementation of this development."

A massive 69 percent of football players indicated they prefer playing on natural grass rather than artificial turf.