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Sports Med. 2012 Sep 1;42(9):725-32. doi: 10.2165/11633040-000000000-00000.

Theoretical integration and the psychology of sport injury prevention.

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  • 1School of Psychology and Speech Pathology, Curtin University, Perth, WA, Australia. derwin.chan@curtin.edu.au


Integrating different theories of motivation to facilitate or predict behaviour change has received an increasing amount of attention within the health, sport and exercise science literature. A recent review article in Sports Medicine, by Keats, Emery and Finch presented an integrated model using two prominent theories in social psychology, self-determination theory (SDT) and the theory of planned behaviour (TPB), aimed at explaining and enhancing athletes' adherence to sport injury prevention. While echoing their optimistic views about the utility of these two theories to explain adherence in this area and the virtues of theoretical integration, we would like to seize this opportunity to clarify several conceptual principles arising from the authors' integration of the theories. Clarifying the theoretical assumptions and explaining precisely how theoretical integration works is crucial not only for improving the comprehensiveness of the integrated framework for predicting injury prevention behaviour, but also to aid the design of effective intervention strategies targeting behavioural adherence. In this article, we use the integration of SDT and TPB as an example to demonstrate how theoretical integration can advance the understanding of injury prevention behaviour in sport.

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