A Qualitative Analysis of Playing Through Pain and Injury: Using the Theory of Planned Behavior to Understand the Communicated Sport Ethic Among Former Youth Athletes

in International Journal of Sport Communication
View More View Less
  • 1 School of Communication, Chapman University, Orange, CA, USA
Restricted access

Each year, thousands of athletes suffer from sport-related pain and injury, with many of these individuals reporting playing through this pain or injury. In order to garner a better understanding as to how youth athletes view these behaviors, as well as the communicative factors that may play a part in the formation of these beliefs, college student participants responded to an online open-ended questionnaire based on the theory of planned behavior. Participants’ (N = 64) retrospective responses were analyzed according to thematic analysis, and results revealed several distinct themes related to their held behavioral, normative, and control beliefs. This research furthers the study of playing through pain and injury in youth athletes, helping to shine a light on some of the motivating forces behind these beliefs and behaviors, as well as indicating several potential paths for the future of this research.

  • Ajzen, I. (1991). The theory of planned behavior. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 50(2), 179211. https://doi.org/10.1016/0749-5978(91)90020-T

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Ajzen, I. (2006). Constructing a theory of planned behavior questionnaire. https://people.umass.edu/aizen/pdf/tpb.measurement.pdf

  • Barrette, A., & Harman, K. (2019). Athletes play through pain—What does that mean for rehabilitation specialists? Journal of Sport Rehabilitation, 29(5), 640649. https://doi.org/10.1123/jsr.2018-0426

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Baugh, C.M., Meehan, W.P., III, Kroshus, E., McGuire, T.G., & Hatfield, L.A. (2019). College football players less likely to report concussions and other injuries with increased injury accumulation. Journal of Neurotrauma, 36(13), 20652072. https://doi.org/10.1089/neu.2018.6161

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Braun, V., & Clarke, V. (2006). Using thematic analysis in psychology. Qualitative Research in Psychology, 3(2), 77101. https://doi.org/10.1191/1478088706qp063oa

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Cohen, J. (1960). A coefficient of agreement for nominal scales. Educational and Psychological Measurement, 20(1), 3746. https://doi.org/10.1177/001316446002000104

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Conn, J.M., Annest, J.L., & Gilchrist, J. (2003). Sports and recreation related injury episodes in the US population, 1997–99. Injury Prevention, 9(2), 117123. https://doi.org/10.1136/ip.9.2.117

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Corbin, J., & Strauss, A. (2008). Basics of qualitative research: Techniques and procedures for developing grounded theory (3rd ed.). Sage. https://doi.org/10.4135/9781452230153

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Curry, T.J. (1993). A little pain never hurt anyone: Athletic career socialization and the normalization of sports injury. Symbolic Interaction, 16(3), 273290. https://doi.org/10.1525/si.1993.16.3.273

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Deroche, T., Woodman, T., Stephan, Y., Brewer, B.W., & Le Scanff, C. (2011). Athletes’ inclination to play through pain: A coping perspective. Anxiety, Stress & Coping, 24(5), 579587. https://doi.org/10.1080/10615806.2011.552717

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Emery, C.A., Roy, T.O., Whittaker, J.L., Nettel-Aguirre, A., & Van Mechelen, W. (2015). Neuromuscular training injury prevention strategies in youth sport: A systematic review and meta-analysis. British Journal of Sports Medicine, 49(13), 865870. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.berh.2019.02.009

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Fenton, L.T., & Pitter, R. (2010). Keeping the body in play: Pain, injury, and socialization in male rugby. Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport, 81(2), 212223. https://doi.org/10.1080/02701367.2010.10599668

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Filiault, S.M., Drummond, M.J., & Agnew, D. (2012). Gender, pain & male athletes: A qualitative analysis. Gay and Lesbian Issues and Psychology Review, 8(1), 314.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Gillet, N., Vallerand, R.J., Amoura, S., & Baldes, B. (2010). Influence of coaches’ autonomy support on athletes’ motivation and sport performance: A test of the hierarchical model of intrinsic and extrinsic motivation. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 11(2), 155161. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.psychsport.2009.10.004

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Glaser, B.G. (1965). The constant comparative method of qualitative analysis. Social Problems, 12(4), 436445. https://doi.org/10.2307/798843

  • Hughes, R., & Coakley, J. (1991). Positive deviance among athletes: The implications of overconformity to the sport ethic. Sociology of Sport Journal, 8(4), 307325. https://doi.org/10.1123/ssj.8.4.307

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Jessiman-Perreault, G., & Godley, J. (2016). Playing through the pain: A university-based study of sports injury. Advances in Physical Education, 6(3), 178194. http://dx.doi.org/10.4236/ape.2016.63020

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Johns, D. (1998). Fasting and feasting: Paradoxes of the sport ethic. Sociology of Sport Journal, 15(1), 4163. https://doi.org/10.1123/ssj.15.1.41

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Johnson, Z.D., & LaBelle, S. (2016). Student-to-student confirmation in the college classroom: An initial investigation of the dimensions and outcomes of students’ confirming messages. Communication Education, 65(1), 4463. https://doi.org/10.1080/03634523.2015.1058961

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Jowett, S., & Timson-Katchis, M. (2005). Social networks in sport: Parental influence on the coach-athlete relationship. The Sport Psychologist, 19(3), 267287. https://doi.org/10.1123/tsp.19.3.267

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Kabiri, S., Choi, J., Shadmanfaat, S.M.S., & Lee, J. (2021). Control deficits, conditioning factors, and playing through pain and injury among Iranian professional soccer players. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 18(7), Article 3387. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18073387

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Kabiri, S., Choi, J., Shadmanfaat, S.M.S., Ponnet, K., Lee, J., Lee, S., & Donner, C.M. (2021). Learning to play through pain and injury: An examination of social learning theory among Iranian athletes. Social Science Quarterly, 102(1), 343361. https://doi.org/10.1111/ssqu.12878

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Kassing, J.W., & Anderson, R.L. (2014). Contradicting coach or grumbling to teammates: Exploring dissent expression in the coach–athlete relationship. Communication & Sport, 2(2), 172185. https://doi.org/10.1177%2F2167479512473988

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Killick, L. (2007). PE kits, playgrounds and pain: An exploration of children’s experiences of risk, pain and injury in sport. In J.S. Jones & J. Raisborough (Eds.), Risks, identities and the everyday (pp. 5166). Routledge. https://doi.org/10.4324/9781315606552

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Kroshus, E., Baugh, C.M., Daneshvar, D.H., & Viswanath, K. (2014). Understanding concussion reporting using a model based on the theory of planned behavior. Journal of Adolescent Health, 54(3), 269274. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jadohealth.2013.11.011

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Kroshus, E., Garnett, B., Hawrilenko, M., Baugh, C.M., & Calzo, J.P. (2015). Concussion under-reporting and pressure from coaches, teammates, fans, and parents. Social Science & Medicine, 134, 6675. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.socscimed.2015.04.011

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Landis, J.R., & Koch, G.G. (1977). An application of hierarchical kappa-type statistics in the assessment of majority agreement among multiple observers. Biometrics, 33(2), 363374. https://doi.org/10.2307/2529786

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Leng, H.K., & Phua, Y.X.P. (2020). Athletes as role models during the COVID-19 pandemic. Managing Sport and Leisure, 27(1–2), 163167. https://doi.org/10.1080/23750472.2020.1762330

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Levy, A.R., Polman, R.C.J., & Clough, P.J. (2008). Adherence to sport injury rehabilitation programs: An integrated psycho-social approach. Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports, 18(6), 798809. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1600-0838.2007.00704.x

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Lewis, T., DiLillo, D., & Peterson, L. (2004). Parental beliefs regarding developmental benefits of childhood injuries. American Journal of Health Behavior, 28(1), S61S68. https://doi.org/10.5993/AJHB.28.s1.7

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Madrigal, L., Robbins, J., Gill, D.L., & Wurst, K. (2015). A pilot study investigating the reasons for playing through pain and injury: Emerging themes in men’s and women’s collegiate rugby. The Sport Psychologist, 29(4), 310318. https://doi.org/10.1123/tsp.2014-0139

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Malcom, N.L. (2006). “Shaking it off” and “toughing it out” socialization to pain and injury in girls’ softball. Journal of Contemporary Ethnography, 35(5), 495525. https://doi.org/10.1177/2F0891241605283571

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • McGannon, K.R., Cunningham, S.M., & Schinke, R.J. (2013). Understanding concussion in socio-cultural context: A media analysis of a National Hockey League star’s concussion. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 14(6), 891899. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.psychsport.2013.08.003

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Nippert, A.H., & Smith, A.M. (2008). Psychologic stress related to injury and impact on sport performance. Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Clinics of North America, 19(2), 399418. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.pmr.2007.12.003

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Nixon, H.L. (1992). A social network analysys of influences on athletes to play with pain and injuries. Journal of Sport and Social Issues, 16(2), 127135. https://doi.org/10.1177/2F019372359201600208

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Nixon, H.L. (1993). Accepting the risks of pain and injury in sport: Mediated cultural influences on playing hurt. Sociology of Sport Journal, 10(2), 183196. https://doi.org/10.1123/ssj.10.2.183

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • O’Connell, S., & Manschreck, T.C. (2012). Playing through the pain: Psychiatric risks among athletes. Current Psychiatry, 11(7), 1620.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Pettersson, S., Ekström, M.P., & Berg, C.M. (2013). Practices of weight regulation among elite athletes in combat sports: A matter of mental advantage? Journal of Athletic Training, 48(1), 99108. https://doi.org/10.4085/1062-6050-48.1.04

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Podlog, L., Kleinert, J., Dimmock, J., Miller, J., & Shipherd, A.M. (2012). A parental perspective on adolescent injury rehabilitation and return to sport experiences. Journal of Applied Sport Psychology, 24(2), 175190. https://doi.org/10.1080/10413200.2011.608102

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Prapavessis, H., & Carron, A.V. (1997). Sacrifice, cohesion, and conformity to norms in sport teams. Group Dynamics: Theory, Research, and Practice, 1(3), 231240. https://doi.org/10.1037/1089-2699.1.3.231

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Roderick, M. (2006). Adding insult to injury: Workplace injury in English professional football. Sociology of Health & Illness, 28(1), 7697. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-9566.2006.00483.x

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Ryan, G.W., & Bernard, H.R. (2000). Techniques to identify themes in qualitative data. https://academia.uat.edu.mx/pariente/Lecturas/Techniques%20to%20Identify%20Themes%20in%20Qualitative%20Data.pdf

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Sanderson, J., Weathers, M., Snedaker, K., & Gramlich, K. (2017). “I was able to still do my job on the field and keep playing”: An investigation of female and male athletes’ experiences with (not) reporting concussions. Communication & Sport, 5(3), 267287. https://doi.org/10.1177/2F2167479515623455

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Sinden, J.L. (2010). The normalization of emotion and the disregard of health problems in elite amateur sport. Journal of Clinical Sport Psychology, 4(3), 241256. https://doi.org/10.1123/jcsp.4.3.241

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Sutton, S., French, D.P., Hennings, S.J., Mitchell, J., Wareham, N.J., Griffin, S., Kinmonth, A.L. (2003). Eliciting salient beliefs in research on the theory of planned behaviour: The effect of question wording. Current Psychology, 22(3), 234251. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12144-003-1019-1

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Van Rijnsoever, F.J. (2017). (I can’t get no) saturation: A simulation and guidelines for sample sizes in qualitative research. PLoS One, 12(7), Article e0181689. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0181689

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Waldron, S., DeFreese, J.D., Pietrosimone, B., Register-Mihalik, J., & Barczak, N. (2019). Exploring early sport specialization: Associations with psychosocial outcomes. Journal of Clinical Sport Psychology, 14(2), 182202. https://doi.org/10.1123/jcsp.2018-0061

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Walk, S.R., & Wiersma, L.D. (2005). Construct validity of the risk, pain, and injury questionnaire. Sociology of Sport Journal, 22(4), 433446. https://doi.org/10.1123/ssj.22.4.433

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Weinberg, R., Vernau, D., & Horn, T. (2013). Playing through pain and injury: Psychosocial considerations. Journal of Clinical Sport Psychology, 7(1), 4159. https://doi.org/10.1123/jcsp.7.1.41

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Young, K., White, P., & McTeer, W. (1994). Body talk: Male athletes reflect on sport, injury, and pain. Sociology of Sport Journal, 11(2), 175194. https://doi.org/10.1123/ssj.11.2.175

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Zanatta, T., Rottensteiner, C., Konttinen, N., & Lochbaum, M. (2018). Individual motivations, motivational climate, enjoyment, and physical competence perceptions in Finnish team sport athletes: A prospective and retrospective study. Sports, 6(4), Article 165. https://doi.org/10.3390/sports6040165

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 232 232 69
Full Text Views 7 7 5
PDF Downloads 10 10 8