E5250. In a Pickle: Unveiling the Landscape of Musculoskeletal Injuries in the Emerging Sport of Pickleball
  1. Joshua Bodrero; Mayo Clinic Arizona
  2. Ravikumar Patel; Mayo Clinic Arizona
  3. Andrew Sill; Mayo Clinic Arizona
  4. Jonathan Flug; Mayo Clinic Arizona
  5. Aaron Wyse; Mayo Clinic Arizona
  6. David Melville; Mayo Clinic Arizona
  7. Jeremiah Long; Mayo Clinic Arizona
Pickleball, with its unique blend of athleticism and camaraderie, has enticed nearly 9 million US players over the past 6 years. This success been attributed due to its refreshing mix of a deceptively low front-end skill requirement and a steep skill cap at endgame. Through this widespread cultural phenomenon, older generations who might otherwise be enjoying athletic retirement are again lacing up their tennis shoes to join the fun. In so doing, many are discovering the hard way that their golden year joints are not quite as spry as their glory day joints. With such a large range of player conditioning, combined with the fast-twitch maneuvers required to rise to pickleball glory, a surmounting collection of acute injuries arise, and can be understood in the context of said maneuvers.

Educational Goals / Teaching Points
This exhibit will provide a comprehensive overview of the pickleball phenomenon in the context of musculoskeletal radiology, while also acknowledging its dramatic rise in popularity in the landscape of American sports. By scrutinizing recent literature and analyzing cutting edge pickleball techniques, such as the chicken wing, scorpion, Bert and Erne, and more, it seeks to uncover the risks and injury patterns unique to the sport, complemented by illustrative cases sourced from our institution.

Key Anatomic/Physiologic Issues and Imaging Findings/Techniques
Bearing resemblances to badminton, tennis, and ping pong, pickleball has, to the slight unfortune of the players, unveiled fresh possibilities for human injury. With the above-mentioned skills and several more, different aspects of the sport's high agility requirement will be highlighted, which tempts participants of all ages to test their vigor past the limits, pull out the win, and often damage joints as collateral. The distinct imaging signatures of pickleball fractures, contusions, tendon tears, and ligamentous injuries are laid bare through a fun interplay between the mechanism of named shots and related case examples. Through this combined demonstration, practitioners are empowered to discover the nuances of each injury, detect them in multiple modalities, speak the athletes’ language, and direct appropriate management and prevention.

This exhibit endeavors to not only highlight the sheer will and enthusiasm of the pickleball community but also to shed light on the potential pitfalls that come with the sport. By understanding the mechanisms and recognizing the distinctive challenges presented by pickleball, practitioners can collaboratively work toward safer and more enjoyable participation in this thriving new sport.