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J Sci Med Sport. 2011 Nov;14(6):482-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jsams.2011.06.002. Epub 2011 Aug 21.

Injury prevention behaviour in community-level soccer players.

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  • 1Injury Prevention Research Unit, Department of Preventive and Social Medicine, Dunedin School of Medicine, University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand.



To adapt and pilot test a method for undertaking routine surveillance of injury prevention behaviour in community-level soccer.


Surveillance system using a cohort design.


Simple random samples were drawn from the player registration databases of two soccer federations. All players aged 13 years or over who intended to play in a school or club competition during the 2006 winter season were eligible. The cohort consisted of 687 male and 193 female players. The players were contacted each week and asked about their adherence to nationally recommended injury prevention measures.


No more than 20% of players completed any form of pre-season screening. Almost all players warmed-up for player-matches (97%) and player-training sessions (93%). Eighty-one percent of players undertook some form of physical conditioning on at least one occasion in the off-season. Very few players (13%) reported receiving instruction on tackling technique pre-season. Shin-guards were worn in 99% of matches. For 61% of match injury events, the injured player continued to play after the injury occurred and in 65% of these cases, the player reported that in hindsight they should not have returned to play.


The results provide a baseline measure of injury prevention behaviour in community-level soccer players. Future research, employing comparable surveillance methods, could be used to monitor progress on adherence to the injury prevention measures canvassed in this study.

Copyright © 2011 Sports Medicine Australia. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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