Strong forecasts for a fragile matter:
Sport injuries under the loss adjuster’s lens

Data collected from more than 6.400 claims in the field of sport reveals useful information to insurance specialists about the frequency and body parts involved in an injury.

Offering an accurate model to analyze the risk of injuries to the insurance market, in the sports field, which can be useful to understand the customers’ needs and to build specific plans, is the spirit of service that make us collect over the years a vast database in excess of 6.400 claims. (We decided to use only the most recent cases as the type of games and frequency have changed).

The database is organized by age groups and injured body parts, with a detail of analysis which allows our customers to support their commercial offers with data. These data include allowances, evaluations, and over-evaluations.
This method enables them to optimize the insurance business performances of each case, with the appropriate coverage requirements and assets’ protection.

 The majority of claims managed and monitored by us concerns of the sport of football in 55% of the cases, followed by basket (18%), motorcycling (8%), hunting (7%), volleyball (5%), cycling (3%), hockey and rugby (2% each).

Even in an industry worth approx. 5 billion euros annually, for example football, injuries seem to be an unpredictable variable. If we look at the 7 clubs fighting for the major titles, shortly after the middle of the season 2020/21, the number of matches that were not played by football players due to an injury (or Covid) were 634.

Still, the “Serie A” payroll corresponds to an investment of 1,28 billion euros: a concentration of human, sport and economic values whose heritage can be challenged by losses or damages.
We developed a scheme which allows to sound out in detail the occurrence and type of injuries, from the most unlikely to the most frequent relapses, in the 6.421 cases analysed.

The information collected reveals that the riskier age for injuries for the athletes is between 27 and 29 years of age (over 500 cases), with problems mostly dealing with lower limbs. As a matter of fact, accidents especially occur to legs (29,2%), knees (27,4%) and ankles (12,6%). Face (5,7%), shoulders (5,6%) and feet (5,3%) are less involved in the injuries.

The “inventory” did not stop here, it also includes the type of injury for each body part.
If we consider the legs, for example, we can distinguish between fracture (tibia and fibula in 10% of the cases, 7% just one of the two), and muscular injuries. As for shoulders, sprains deal with scapula humerus (8%) or and acromion clavicle (5%). Ankle’s distortions differ depending on the involvement (7%) or not (5%) of ligaments, not to mention the fractures of the tibia-fibula malleolus (less than 7%). And so on.

 Eye

 Trauma  / Contused lacerated wound

<3%

 Face

 Fracture of nasal bones

4%

 Fracture of the mandible

5%

 Fracture of right cheekbone

6%

 Teeth

 Avulsion

0%

 Neck

 Whiplash injury

1%

 Head

 Cranial trauma

<4%

 Back

 Fracture/contusion

4%

 Herniated disk

7%

 Hip

 Dislocation

4%

 Torso

 Contusion/fracture ribs

<3%

 Trauma pneumothorax

0%

 Groin

 Hernia

<3%

 Pain

0%

 Shoulder

 Scapular-humeral dislocation

8%

 Acromion-clavicular dislocation

5%

 Arm

 Fracture

5%

 Elbow

 Dislocation / Fracture

7%

 Hand

 Fracture of the finger

<5%

 Metacarpal fracture

<4%

 Wrist

 Fracture / distortion

<5%

 Leg

 Fracture of the shinbone or fibula

7%

 Fracture of the shinbone and fibula

10%

 Muscular injuries

5%

 Knee

 Injury of the MCL

8%

 Injury of the ECL

9%

 Injury of the PCL

8%

 Injury of the ACL

9%

 

 Meniscus injury

2%

 Ankle

 Sprain without capsular/ligament sprains

<5%

 Sprain with capsular/ligament sprains

7%

 Fracture of the tibial/peroneal malleolus

<7%

 Foot

 Fractuire of the toe phalanx

4%

 Metatarsal fracture

5%

 Heel

 Trauma / Fracture

6%

A further universe of insurance products concerns relapses: leg muscle (43.1%), knee (26.1%) and ankle injuries (16.1%) are those with the greatest recurrence.

An even more in-depth data collection concerned the effect of relapses on most injured body parts, knees and legs, specifying for each part the affected muscles and the type of damage (tendinopathy, rupture of the meniscus, injury to the adductors …). Therefore, it will be useful to know, before preparing an insurance protection scheme, that the hamstring risk of relapse (24.8%) is in one case out of five due to muscle injury to the legs, or that the medial collateral ligament suffers a relapse in one out of three cases (34%) depending on the knee. 5.96% of the 6,421 injured people suffered a second accident in the following years.

Relaps and body parts calculation
Focusing the attention on the two most damaged areas of the body, here below some additional diagrams

Far from being a mere statistical exercise for sports enthusiasts, such a data collection, built from direct experience (and well before the advent of any AI), can be really important for professionals that design insurance products precisely, accelerating the analysis and the decision times. Based on the information, collected with discernment on the various medical-sports cases, it is possible to correctly assess the risk assumption and the protection parameters which can be guaranteed on mandatory, individual, patrimonial, by back or total temporary disability policies which often, given the values ​of champions, involve high sums insured.

SOURCES:

  • Schwegler Associated Limited internal data
  • FIGC, bilancio 2019: il calcio italiano contribuisce al 12% del PIL del calcio mondiale, Corriere dello Sport, 20 novembre 2020
  • Stipendi Serie A 2020-21, i calciatori più pagati: da Cristiano Ronaldo a Ibrahimovic, Fanpage, 19 ottobre 2020
  • Sos infortuni, la Serie A ha bruciato 634 partite (solo con i top club), Panorama, 8 marzo 2021

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