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Warrior Girls: Protecting Our Daughters Against the Injury Epidemic in Women's Sports
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Warrior Girls: Protecting Our Daughters Against the Injury Epidemic in Women's Sports

3.86  ·  Rating Details ·  134 Ratings  ·  40 Reviews
Amy Steadman was destined to become one of the great women's soccer players of her generation. "The best of the best," Parade magazine called her as she left high school and headed off to the University of North Carolina. Instead, by age twenty, Amy had undergone five surgeries on her right knee. She had to give up the sport she loved. She walked with a stiff gait, like an ...more
ebook, 352 pages
Published June 3rd 2008 by Simon & Schuster (first published 2008)
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Aug 08, 2011 Laura rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sports
While researching roller derby drills, I was stunned by this New York Times article about the high rate of injury in girls' and women's sports. The article turned out to be a short version of Michael Sokolove's very troubling Warrior Girls. He reveals that women competing in high school and college-level sports are injured much more often than men - female soccer players, for example, experience catastrophic ACL injuries at eight times the rate of their male counterparts. Warrior Girls is a stud ...more
Liz B
Aug 16, 2014 Liz B rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction, sports
This was absolutely fascinating. As skeptical as I am of anything that has a blurb from Dr. Oz, I thought this was well researched and well argued.

I picked this book up because I was reading about concussions in sports, and it's really not about that at all--one very short section about concussions--it's mostly about ACL ruptures. I really got some good takeaways as a parent. Now, let me be clear--the genetic chances of my son (now 6) getting seriously involved in sports are pretty slim. What I
ACL injuries have really devastated women’s sports. Women are much more likely to suffer ACL injuries than are their male counterparts – particularly those women who play sports with lots of directional changes and/or collisions with other players (soccer, basketball, tennis, etc.). And now that many girls play their sports year-round, they have more opportunities to injure themselves and little time to rest. Most parents are swept up in the action and only want what’s best for their girls (oppo ...more
Jun 23, 2012 Steph rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sports, women, gender
I generally get angry at biological arguments about women in sports (well women can't do x, y, z because they are biologically programmed to be mothers blah blah blah) but I think Michael Sokolove, the father of a teenage female athlete at the time he wrote the book, does the best he can to avoid this rhetoric. Does he completely succeed? No but he does ok for a white male author.

Sokolove writes out of a sense of urgency in bringing the public's attention to an epidemic of serious sports injuri
Taro Yamashita
Good coverage of most of the issues surrounding the rise of the ACL injury epidemic among female athletes, especially younger girls and young women. A bit sensationalist, fraught with the emphasis and desperation of a father of a female athlete at times, but at other times, pretty reasonable tone.

As a sports coach who teaches a lot of female athletes, this type of reading is important to me. Some of the ideas and fears presented in this book are decades old (I studied them when I was still in co
Jan 13, 2015 David rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
well-researched deep dive into the pandemic of injuries in girls/women's sports, with some focus on concussions but particular emphasis on knee injuries, ACL tears in particular. He got some great interviews with coaches and with athletes who have had multiple ACL tears, incl. one who played college soccer at a high level but is now more or less disabled and in chronic pain at age 26.

It's not a self-help guide as such, but he does delve into some evidence-based programs for ACL prevention [sound
Oct 15, 2014 Sarah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book made me want to cry. We are all doomed. It's like watching 12 Years a Slave. Every page was agonizing. Of course no one reads this book until they have a knee injury, and then it's relevant, but sooo bleak. As the third derby girl in my inner circle to have ACL surgery on her right knee in the last 5 months, I can relate to a lot in this book. Hips, and knees that tilt in when I skate? Check! Even though my league started doing PEP this year, I fear that we aren't doing it often enough ...more
Jan 07, 2010 Unwisely rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, 2010
Even though I'm neither an athlete nor a parent, the writing style is engrossing enough that I stayed up Too Late to read more of this book. And it is fascinating, even though I found the girls' dedication to sports (mostly soccer) completely alien. I ... have never had that. And they're ruining themselves for it. Fascinating.
A little unbalanced in terms of providing so much info on ACL injuries and less on concussions, but a very interesting read. From the final chapter on prescriptives, some good advice for parents:
1/ parents need to stop abdicating responsibility and must start protecting their daughters. They should seek out ACL prevention programs (e.g. and demand that they be instituted for the club and school teams
2/ inquire with potential trainers about how they tailor train
Kristina H
Jun 01, 2016 Kristina H rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Overall, I would give this book 4/5 stars. The author, Michael Sokolove, did a great job of making the book factual yet filled with anecdotal evidence from real athletes. The story follows different female athletes who had suffered multiple major injuries due to their hardcore devotion to a sport. However, it is not at the fault of the women, the problem is sprouting from the fact that these athletes are being pushed to limits that cannot be reached without proper training. The book brings a new
Apr 19, 2013 Megan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I found this book at the doctor's office my son was a visiting for his concussion. Fascinating subject! In all sports, girls are injured at mugh higher rates than boys. For back pain, concussions, knee problems and broken bones. Girls ruin their ACLs 8x more often than boys.

Scientists are only now beginning to study why, and this research has been controversial as many like to believe girls and boys bodies' are equal, but injury rates clearly show this not to be the case. Why, then the higher r
Sep 06, 2014 Angie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Thoughtful, well-researched, and important. Everyone involved in girls'/women's sports should read this. The focus is on ACL injuries in soccer, but Sokolove talks about many other aspects of girls and girls' sports that contribute to injuries. My favorite quote: "To play multiple sports is, in the best sense, childlike. It's fun. You move on from one good thing to the next. But to specialize in one conveys a seriousness of purpose. It seems to be leading somewhere - even if, in fact, the real d ...more
Feb 01, 2016 Kayley rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think this book was overall interesting and a good read. It taught me things that I didn't know. From the beginning I really enjoyed this book because it was more specific to a certain situation. Throughout the book, it jumped to different situations which helped to understand what they were talking about. I feel like there was a lot of repeating done in this book, though. It did get very boring because I feel like it was just repeating and repeating what it said earlier. When it didn't repeat ...more
Jul 15, 2012 DW rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sports
Most of this book was stuff I'd already read about in the newspaper (some of it verbatim): girls who play soccer at a high level tear their ACLs way too often; they should rest, play other sports, and learn how to land properly. All good stuff, but no need for it to be repeated a hundred times. (I picked up the book because I thought it would be about MMA, that's usually the sport that uses the word "warrior".)

The description of what actually happens during ACL reconstructive surgery was pretty
Oct 20, 2013 Andrea rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An easy, interesting read. It is extremely relevant to what's going on with my current teammates, as well as other women's sports teams at our school. The author highlights some really interesting research, and the interviews are fascinating because they are so emotional and "raw." I completely agree with the author's suggestions for changing the culture of women's sports, especially starting at the youth level. All female athletes should read this book and pay attention to the lessons!
Jun 08, 2009 Megan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book explores the causes of injuries in women's sports with a particular focus on ACL injuries. Although parts of the books seemed repetitive, the author discusses important topics such as the "professional" nature of young children's sports, the impact of Title 9 on research into women's injuries, and research into the causes of these debilitating injuries. As a coach of middle school athletes, I enjoyed reading it and feel much more informed than before.
Tanya Roberts
May 13, 2012 Tanya Roberts rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very informative to read as an athlete. Content is well-structured and researched, with stories of personal struggle. The author writes with passion, with caution of damaging the ideals of female athletes. But most of all, there are things that can be done to prevent knee injury, especially if athletes start early with training exercises and by allowing for cross-training and rest in our young female athletes.
Jun 30, 2011 Sugy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
great book to introduce people to some of the injury problems to female athletes. it harps on knee injuries, particularly those to the ACL (not the only injury female athletes have). even for those of us that study and work in sports injury/public health/rehabilitation, this brings a different perspective to the problems and only emphasizes the need to do more research and fund better studies
Jennifer Willis-rivera
This is an amazing book - a must-read for anyone who enjoys soccer or (like me) has a daughter playing soccer. While it may scare some parents from putting their daughters in soccer - I think the biggest takeaway from this is proper training. Now, proper training for making "headers" is also suggested to help prevent concussions (which are also more prevalent in girls). A great read.
Aug 25, 2008 Jkirby rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A journalist view of the rise of female athlete's acl,mcl and other crippling sports injuries. A female athlete is generally 10 times more likely than a male to have a serious debilitating injury, most likely an acl. 80% of female athletes either come into college sports with at least one acl scar or will have at least one acl scar by the time they graduate.
Jan 02, 2016 Stephanie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction, 2015
This book mostly discusses ACL knee injuries to teenage girl soccer players. The book connects the overplaying that is occurring in some communities to injuries that impact the young women for the rest of their lives. interesting read as a physician, but does not change my opinion that youth athletics should be diverse and not like a job.
Dec 14, 2008 Allyn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Amazing book that makes clear one-gender-fits all for sports training is harming our girls. Our training regime's have been based on male bodies. It's more than past time for us to adjust girl's training for what their bodies need so they can get stronger, play better, and experience far less injury.
Sokolove stirs the pot about a topic that is worthy of discussion. Growing up in a must win environment, I knew far too many female athletes who blew out knees, hips, and ankles. I'm curious what development there's been in the past eight years, since this was first published.
This wasn't necessarily as applicable to my mystery knee injury - or approach at an "advanced" age - as I would have wanted. Where are the books for plaguing injuries that require a shift in worldview? I think I need a self-help book for turning 30.
Jun 01, 2010 Lanell rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I didn't read the whole thing pretty much just scanned through the chapters I thought sounded interesting. Good book. I know there are tons of ACL injuries among women so it was interesting to read about why that happens.
Aug 01, 2010 Az rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sport
Sokolove presents information well, and understands the major roadblock to discussing injuries in women's sports; by acknowledging high injury rates it may sound like women simply aren't 'cut out' to be athletes.
Nov 06, 2012 Adrienne rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is necessary reading for anyone who was or is a girl playing high school sports. A few hip flexor exercises could've prevented my stupid ACL tear. I wish more people knew about this.
Jan 08, 2010 Beth rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you have a daughter or know someone who has a daughter who plays soccer... you MUST read this book! 2 weeks later I tore my other ACL. Every girl's coach should read this.
Nancy Sokolove
Nov 18, 2009 Nancy Sokolove rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
of course this was great - my brother wrote it!
must read for anyone who has a teen-aged or soon-to-be teen-aged athletic girl.
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“We hear about Tiger Woods as a prodigy at three years old. For every Tiger Woods, there are thousands of kids who never want to touch a golf club again.” 0 likes
“Emotionally, I was just a mess. But it’s such a long recovery period that you have to come to terms with it. You can’t cry the whole time until you get back on the field.” 0 likes
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