Good Sportsmanship Equals Fewer Injuries
All it took was a little education to help the citizens of Motala, Sweden, to substantially reduce their incidence of sports-related injuries.
Researchers from the University of Linkoping worked with the city's recreational department to create an educational program that emphasized proper preparation and fair play.
Physical education teachers and sports officials were trained in injury prevention techniques, while sports leagues mandated protective gear. Beginners were provided with extra supervision as well.
After one year, injury statistics were collected and compared to the previous year (during which no educational efforts were made).
The results were remarkable: Moderate injuries dropped by nearly one-half, while the overall rate of injury was reduced by 14 percent (the rate of severe injuries remained the same).
Soccer players experienced the biggest drop in injuries, which researchers suspect was largely due to references enforcing rules of sportsmanship.
Source: British Journal of Sports Medicine, 2001; 35, 270-271
This appeared in ACE FitnessMatters, ACE's official magazine.
Click here to order your subscription today.
for ACE's FREE e-newsletter for fitness enthusiasts.