Artificial surfaces have the potential to influence performance of athletes and the risk of injury due to shock absorbing and frictional properties.
The amount of friction or traction that develops between the shoe and playing surface has an influence on injury. Higher injury rates are associated with higher traction. In American football, artificial turf produces more non-severe injuries than natural surfaces. Severe injuries are more common on natural surfaces – believed to be due to shoe/surface frictional forces.
‘Turf toe’ – sprain of plantar capsular ligaments of first MPJ due to hyperextension injury – has a higher incidence on artificial surfaces.