Differences in psychological variables predicting sports injury depending on the injury outcome. A comparison between severity and time-loss outcomes of sports injuries

Victor Rubio, University Autonoma Madrid, Spain

Theme: Injury/trauma/rehabilitation

Poster Number: 119

Program ID: POS-2

Presentation: October 4, 2013 5:30 pm - 7:00 pm

Room: Napoleon


The number of sports injuries is dramatically increasing regardless categories and modalities and with a high impact on life-long physical and mental well-being. A full understanding of the phenomenon demands a complete identification of the internal and external risk factors and the injury mechanisms for an appropriate prevention and rehabilitation. Regarding internal factors, several psychological variables have been found to increase the vulnerability of athletes to injury to the point that some of them has been included in the Andersen & Williams’s (1988) influential model of stress and sports injury. However, there are some contradictory results which would be related to how sports injury is measured. The present paper attempts to analyze the role of coping strategies, locus of control, social support, self-efficacy, risk propensity and trait-anxiety on injury’s severity and number of days an athlete misses. After receiving the IRB approval, a sample of 297 Spanish athletes from 25 different sports participated in the study. The assessment instruments used were the Spanish versions of the Kim et al. (1997) ACSQ, the Rotter’s (1966) Locus of Control Scale, the GSE, the Zimet et al.’s (1988) MSPSS, the Weber, Blais and Betz’s (2002) DOSPERT, and the Spielberger et al. (2002) STAI. Athletes were also assessed in their sports injury history during the past season in order to establish severity and time loss. Multiple linear regression analysis showed a robust pattern of relationships between Trait-Anxiety (positively) and Emotional Calming (negatively) and both injury outcomes. However, there were two variables that influenced on sports injury depending on the outcome used: Risk propensity (Recreational domain) positively predicted Sports Injury Severity though Self-efficacy positively predicted training and/or competition time loss throughout the season. Conclusions regarding the role of psychological variables in predicting sports injuries and what would be the best sports injury outcomes are discussed.

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