The Dangers of Being a Jockey

Published: 03rd July 2007
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Everyone talks about the dangers open to the horses in a Grand National but rarely does anyone mention the men who mount them - the poor jockeys.

AOL Sport sought the views of leading orthopaedic surgeon, Simon Moyes, who has treated many jockeys in his career, on the dangers a top jockey will face.

Moyes, who has owned a racehorse himself said: "Being a jockey is a high risk profession. There is an extraordinary amount of skill required; a combination of the position of the jockey whilst racing, the speed of the race horse, the manoeuvres during the race and the enormous jumps pre dispose the jockey to major trauma.

"The most common injuries that jockey's sustain (19%) are to the head and neck followed by the lower leg (15%), foot and ankle (10%), lower back (10%) and the arm and hand (10%).

"Steeple chasing, in particular the Grand National, in my opinion produce a higher rate than normal of upper limb injuries such as fractures of the collar bone and the rest of the shoulder girdle.

"Jockeys in my experience have an extremely high pain threshold and rehabilitate and recover from such injuries much faster than the normal population. I personally wish all the jockey's well for Saturdays great race at Aintree."

Simon Moyes operates out of the Wellington hospital in St John's Wood and his website can be found here Simon Moyes. The good news for Tony Dobbin is that he will be fit to ride in Saturday's John Smith's Grand National after all.

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