Anything can happen to you when playing hockey like breaking a leg or an arm. you need to wash your gear about once a month because all of the germs and bacteria on your pads will build up and you can get "staph"
Health issues include staph infections, fungus, mold and minor to life threatening rashes and other infections. Pro players refer to the common hockey gear rashes as "gunk". A number of players have retired due to the debilitating symptoms of "gunk". Raw skin, rashes, open weeping flesh wounds, resistent to antibiotics. Joe Thornton of the Bruins suffered a serious infection to his hand from a minor cut. Amputation was even discussed. Fortunately he recovered completely and is now a spokesman for a gear cleaning system. Lecavalier had a similar infection on his ankle and missed a number of games last season while treating the problem. Cleaning gear is something relatively new in the hockey world. Equipment managers and trainers are constantly battling the "stink" - simply an outward sign of bacteria and fungus growing in the gear. A study at a Midwest university found extremely resistent bacteria growing in hockey gear. If you think about it what other workout gear do you sweat in and not wash? Nothing! Wash your gear often. There is a growing niche market of equipment cleaners addressing this very issue for hockey, football, lacrosse, and other protective equipment. It makes sense but up until recently there wasn't a good solution and changing the "stinky hockey" culture (no pun) was difficult. And of course you might break a bone or pull a muscle. But look around, you will find very active and excellent hockey players of all ages. The adult non-checking leagues have a lot of 30, 40 and 50 year old people playing. It is quite low impact on the body and is excellent exercise. Enjoy, see you on the ice.
There are lots of injuries that can happen while on the ice. One of the most famous cases is Travis Roy who 11 seconds into his college hockey career fell head first into the boards and paralyzed himself from the neck down. it was a freak accident that could happen at any time. an easy way to stay safe in hockey is to remember to keep your head up at ALL times, even when you are sliding into the boards. There are many more injuries, but are easy to prevent if everybody in the game stays calm and plays by the rules.
Anything... you can break anything in hockey.... and damage nerves... get a concussion... hockey is a dangerous sport, more aggresive than football.
Field hockey is a limited contact sport, i.e. it is non-contact in nature and the rulebook, but contact is inevitable - basketball and soccer are some other limited-contact sports.
Common injuries in field hockey include (typical percentage of all field hockey injuries in brackets):
- Knee injuries (15%) - typically sprains or ligament injuries from sudden changes in direction or contact with the ball or another player's stick.
- Finger, hand and wrist injuries (15%) - typically fractures from contact with the ball or another player's stick, or abrasions from contact with the turf surface.
- Ankle injuries (14.5%) - typically sprains from sudden changes in direction
- Facial injuries (11%) - typically soft tissue injuries (sometimes concussions) from contact with the ball or another player's stick.
- Thigh injuries (11%) - typically muscle strains
- Back injuries (8.5%) - typically overuse injuries