A comprehensive analysis of injuries in surfing: epidemiology, aetiology, biomechanics and injury prevention


This project aims to define common injury patterns in professional and non-professional surfers, discover likely mechanisms of injury through biomechanical analysis, and finally identify strategies for minimising such injuries through warm-up programs or technique modification


Dr Marnee McKay, Professor Evangelos Pappas

Research Location

Health Sciences - Generic

Program Type



Surfing is one of the fastest growing water sports worldwide, with its popularity and exposure set to be thrust into the spotlight at the upcoming 2020 Olympic Games where it will feature for the first time. However, little is known about the patterns of injury among professional and non-professional surfers, and recently severe injury patterns have been seen in the sport’s most elite performers. With this project, we seek to identify predisposing biological and activity-related factors that can lead to injury. We aim to develop prevention strategies, and a novel sport-specific warm-up program. The project is being developed in consultation with the world’s peak sporting body, the World Surf League (WSL).

The project will be divided into three phases

  1. Injury surveillance: basic demographics and physical characteristics of professional and non-professional surfers; types of injuries sustained; treatments administered; rates of return to function (basic daily activities vs return to sport vs return to competition); use of warm-up programs
  2. Biomechanical analysis: of surfing maneuvers and key positioning associated with surfing  
  3. Development and efficacy of prevention strategies 

Additional Information

  • Students interested in surfing, injury epidemiology, biomechanics and injury prevention Would be good candidates for this project

Want to find out more?

Contact us to find out what’s involved in applying for a PhD. Domestic students and International students

Contact Research Expert to find out more about participating in this opportunity.

Browse for other opportunities within the Health Sciences - Generic .


Surfing, anterior cruciate ligament injury, injury prevention program, injury surveillance

Opportunity ID

The opportunity ID for this research opportunity is: 2723

Other opportunities with Dr Marnee McKay

Other opportunities with Professor Evangelos Pappas