When You’re Injured Playing Sports

Professional sports injuries aren't uncommon. Although some athletes are inherently more at risk for injuries than others based on the sport they participate in, it's safe to assume that injuries are possible in any sport. Basketball, soccer, cheerleading, hockey, and football are among the sports with the highest risk of injury.

Chances are you've watched a game or match before and saw someone on your favorite team taken off the field for an injury. But do you know what happens behind the curtain after a professional athlete is injured? The fact is, what happens next can be tricky and very frustrating for athletes. Here's what you may not have known:

They Can Get Cut From the Team

Most people assume that organizations are required to continue paying their athletes after they've been hurt. However, the fine print here can be difficult to navigate. For example, although they may continue to receive their salary after the injury, the contract can be restructured and they can be cut from the team, receiving only a portion of their salary. On a collegiate level, athletes on their way to professional sports can lose their scholarships after an injury, derailing their education and career aspirations entirely.

Opioid Usage in Sports

The risk of losing salary, position, or scholarship is often too high for an athlete to bear -- particularly when sports play such a central and primary role in their life. As a result, they may abuse opioids to help them perform better and decrease the risk of getting cut from the team. In a study of retired NFL players, 52% reported that they'd used opioids at some point in their career, and 71% of them admitted that they'd abused the drug. Another study found that NFL players use prescription painkillers at a rate that's four times higher than the general population.

Understanding Assumption of Risk

Assumption of risk is a legal term that absolves an entity of responsibility if the individual is hurt performing their duties. In sports, this essentially means that athletes understand they may get hurt in the sport and are held accountable for it.

Sports leagues do not want to be held accountable for injuries that are inherent within the sport; for instance, if a basketball player damages their Achilles heel after a score, the NBA doesn't expect a lawsuit because these are the risks associated with the sport in question.

Injury Due to Negligence

Regardless of whether an athlete has signed a contract that includes an assumption of risk clause, there are many instances where an athlete can go around their signature. According to Stein Law, a team of accident lawyers in Fort Myers, in cases of negligence, athletes may be able to sue for medical compensation, loss of salary, and emotional distress. While accidents do occur, some accidents fall far out of the normal scope of injury, and in these cases, the entity in question can be held financially responsible.

Negligence in sports occurs when a player fails to receive adequate duty of care. For example, improper equipment, failure to screen, negligent hiring, and failure to property train are all reasons that negligence might occur behind closed doors. Unsafe conditions on the field or training areas are also reasons that might cause injuries.

For example, many NFL players have filed lawsuits against the league for failing to disclose the long-term consequences of sustained concussions. Although the NFL was aware of the link between football and brain injuries, they didn't address those risks properly, and in many cases, players weren't given proper care for their concussions.

Featured Site