Why risk it? A pilot study on athletes return to sport decisions following concussion injuries and the influence of education

Alexander Procyk, Victoria Waterworth, Wayne A Hing, Elisa Canetti, Suzanne Gough

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Aim: The aim of this study was to explore the influence of education and other factors on an athletes’ decision to return to sport (RTS) post-concussion injury, and whether general risk-taking tendencies are related to RTS post-concussion decisions in athletes. Design: A self-administered electronic survey was purposely designed to examine their decision-making process when faced with scenario-based questions regarding RTS post-concussion injury. Method: Students from the Health Sciences and Medicine Faculty at Bond University were invited to participate. Participants were randomly allocated to a concussion education or non-education group via the random generator on Qualtrics software function. The risk propensity scale was used to assess the risk aversion. Results: Sixteen respondents were included within the current study, eight in both the education and noneducation groups respectively. Influential factors that would influence a decision to RTS included: game importance, concussion severity and symptoms, internal and external factors. RTS also varied factors depending on season and game type. Conclusion: This was the first study to determine the influences that affect RTS post-concussion injury decisions, the role that concussion education plays with these decisions, and the relationship between the general risk-taking capabilities and athletes’ decisions to RTS. Key Practice Points: • Despite providing concussion education, there were still differences in decisions relating to the hypothetical scenario of RTS following a concussion. • There is a discrepancy when athletes choose to take risks in sport compared to everyday life. • Further research is required to understand athletes general risk-taking propensities when dealing with RTS decisions. Proposed impact, if any, on the health outcomes of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people: The findings of this review have direct relevance to anyone participating in sport from the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Population. 
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 19 Oct 2019
EventTRANSFORM 2019 Physiotherapy Conference - Adelaide Convention Centre, Adelaide, Australia
Duration: 17 Oct 201919 Oct 2019
https://transform.physio/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/Abstract_Book_Adelaide_2019.pdf (Book of Abstracts)


ConferenceTRANSFORM 2019 Physiotherapy Conference
Abbreviated titleAPA
Internet address


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