Wednesday, December 07, 2011

Fact of the Day: Hunting is Safer Than Bowling?

According to the National Shooting Sports Foundation, hunting with firearms is one of the safest recreational activities in America (here's the press release and here's the fact sheet with sources provided).  Based on the percentage of injuries per 100 participants, hunting with firearms (0.05%) is slightly safer than bowling (0.06%) or jogging (0.08%) and slightly less safe than billiards (0.02%), see chart above.   The organization also points out that compared to hunting a person is:
  • 11 times more likely to be injured playing volleyball
  • 19 times more likely to be injured snowboarding
  • 25 times more likely to be injured cheerleading or bicycle riding
  • 34 times more likely to be injured playing soccer or skateboarding
  • 105 more times likely to be injured playing tackle football.
Not surprisingly, the least safe sport is football (tackle) by far, followed by basketball, skateboarding, soccer, wrestling and bicycle riding (see chart below).


At 12/07/2011 9:43 AM, Blogger Steamboat Lion said...

Tell that to the deer!

Seriously, what does percentage per 100 participants mean. I thought percentage was already per hundred. So is it actually per 10,000 participants?

Similar data for fatalities would be interesting. Maybe I'm more likely to get injured falling off my snowboard, but if Dick Cheney shoots me in the face maybe I'm more likely to be dead.

At 12/07/2011 9:54 AM, Blogger morganovich said...

this seems like you'd need to weight it by severity of injury to get a more accurate picture.

skinning your knee on a skateboard is not the same as getting shot.

At 12/07/2011 11:01 AM, Blogger tom said...

@morganovich - that was my immediate thought as well. I would rather twist my ankle than shooting my foot. :)

At 12/07/2011 11:36 AM, Blogger juandos said...

"Tell that to the deer!"...

Why bother when its more fun to shoot them?

Venison! Good eats!

Ever peruse the CDC's FastStats A to Z site?

At 12/07/2011 11:51 AM, Blogger Benjamin Cole said...

Unless you plan to hunt with Dick "Sure Shot" Cheney, this may be true.

At 12/07/2011 1:05 PM, Blogger AIG said...

Somehow I think an "injury" while hunting or mountain biking may be more significant than an "injury" while playing tennis.

At 12/07/2011 4:06 PM, Blogger Hydra said...

Doesn't say anything about the severity of the injuries. A jammed finger from vollyball or sprained ankle from bowling is not the same as getting shot.

At 12/07/2011 5:40 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You have to wonder how long American tackle football can stick around given those horrible stats. The barbaric sport of boxing is already on the downslide because of the repeated head trauma associated with punching each other's heads, and people are finding out similar things about American football. The NFL is already changing the rules because of how their players are getting maimed and their brains scrambled. I don't think the league or the sport will be around in a couple decades.

At 12/07/2011 5:51 PM, Blogger Marko said...

Even so, I bet most hunting accidents are sprained ankles and hypothermia. The first from walking around in the woods, the second from sitting in a blind.

Notice, though, that they are comparing gun hunting to archer practice. Makes you wonder what the stats are for gun practice and bow hunting . . .

At 12/07/2011 7:05 PM, Blogger Joe said...

This is not he appropriate measure. Need to measure the quantity of times the person engages in activity. A better unit would be per person per day of activity. There are many many more person days of football than hunting.

At 12/08/2011 1:23 AM, Blogger trshaw said...

"Percentage per 100" is redundantly saying the same thing twice.

At 12/08/2011 10:14 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

Similar data for fatalities would be interesting. Maybe I'm more likely to get injured falling off my snowboard, but if Dick Cheney shoots me in the face maybe I'm more likely to be dead.

I would say that is a very good point.

At 12/08/2011 7:58 PM, Blogger kleht said...

My question here would be the extent of injuries when they occur. Specifically for me, I've played tennis for 37 years and I hunted when I was very young.

I have difficulty thinking that hunting is safer than tennis. The difficulty arises from the extent of any injuries when they do
occur and the amount of time over which hunting and tennis activities take place.

1) Injuries occurring from hunting are usually far more serious than injuries occurring in tennis. This alone would indicate that tennis is safer than hunting.

2) There is far more tennis playing than there is hunting on a per capita basis, unless I'm missing something here. While the amount of hunting can be
calculated based on licenses and the length of the hunting seasons themselves, how does one arrive at an estimate of time spent playing tennis? All tennis playing is not paid for and not kept track of.

This just makes me wonder just what factors are used to determine the relative safety of the various activities.

It appears here that the source of the information might be influenced by someone trying to prove something and using selective information. Statistics can be abused. There is not enough information here to test the credibility of the safety claims of hunting versus the other activities.


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