Sports Medicine Motocross Injuries: How Riders Can Stay Safe on Race Day By Sports Medicine, April 6, 2018 Motocross is a thrilling, off-road motorcycle racing sport that’s quickly gaining in popularity. But with the thrill of the ride — accelerating up dirt hills and cruising through muddy terrain — comes the risk of injury. The five most common motocross injuries are: Ankle sprains Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tears Broken collarbone Broken or sprained wrist Rotator cuff tears and other shoulder injuries Because motocross accidents, falls, and collisions occur often, it’s important for riders to have proper, well-fitted safety equipment that is suited to their age, experience, and level of competition. Connect with UPMC Sports Medicine online or by calling 1-855-93-SPORT (77678). When It Comes to Safety, You Need the Right Motocross Gear In motocross, there is always the possibility of crashing during practice or in a race. Wearing the proper gear can soften the impact of a fall or crash, leading to a less severe injury. Always wear long pants and long sleeves made of durable material. Kneepads and knee braces can help prevent ligament injuries. Body armor and chest protectors can provide an extra layer of coverage. They come in a variety of shapes, colors, and sizes to suit your performance level. Protecting your eyes in the event of a crash is critical. Wear shatterproof goggles to shield your eyes during a fall, crash, or flying debris. Boots that fit properly are an important part of staying safe and avoiding common motocross injuries. If your boots are too big, it can be difficult to control the bike. And boots must have a steel toe to comply with safety requirements. Most importantly, the value of wearing a helmet cannot be overstated. Your helmet should fit your head well and strap securely. Make sure your helmet has a certification sticker to ensure it meets safety regulations. RELATED: More Than Upper Body and Lower Body: Your Guide to Hockey Injuries Motocross Race Preparation: How You Can Stay Safe Check your equipment in advance Walk the track (you need to know where the trouble spots might be) Don’t forget to stretch Bring a friend or family member in case of an emergency Inspect your dirt bike for any tune-ups or parts replacements prior to racing Motocross Crash Safety: What to Do If You Wreck Crashing your bike is a part of motocross. If you do crash, you should not attempt to restart your bike in the middle of the track. The safest thing to do is to move yourself and your bike out of the way of other riders, if you can. If you are seriously injured, you should stay in place and wait for help. If you and your team have a signal for assistance, try to give it as soon as possible. Connect with UPMC Sports Medicine online or by calling 1-855-93-SPORT (77678).