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Theresa Miyashita

Sport-related concussions have recently been at the forefront of mainstream media, where the attention is now turning to the safety of our young athletes. With the recent rise of concussion lawsuits, coaches need to know concussion basics to protect their athletes and themselves. What we know about concussions has evolved, and it is critical that coaches understand these changes and how they impact the management of their teams’ injuries. In the absence of medical personnel, coaches are responsible for removing athletes from play if they have potentially sustained a concussion. Coaches must therefore understand the different mechanisms of injury, signs and symptoms, and the protocol to follow if they believe their athlete has sustained a concussion.

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Susan E. Vail

Many sport organizations face the challenge of declining sport participation. Traditional methods of addressing this challenge such as promotional ads and top-down initiatives that ignore community needs have not succeeded in sustaining sport participation. This action research study assessed the impact of the building tennis communities model, a community development approach based on three key elements: identifying a community champion, developing collaborative partnerships, and delivering quality sport programming. Eighteen communities across Canada were supported by the national sport governing body, Tennis Canada, to participate in the study. Findings demonstrated that communities were able to identify a community champion and deliver quality programs that aimed to increase and sustain tennis participation; however, partnership building was implemented in a very preliminary and incomplete manner. Recommendations about the benefits of using a community development approach to not only increase sport participation but also develop communities through sport are presented with implications for researchers, policy makers, and practitioners.

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Peter A. Hastie

This study provides an ecological analysis of a sport education season. Through the examination of the tasks and accountability operating in this season, it was determined that the high level of enthusiastic student engagement was due to the presence of three vectors, all of which make positive contributions to sustaining the program of action. These vectors include the teacher’s managerial task system, the student social system, and the content-embedded accountability inherent in the curriculum model. Sport education provides a multidimensional program of action, in contrast to more traditional physical education settings, where teachers either push students through the curriculum with strong external accountability as a way of achieving and sustaining order, or retreat to a curricular zone of safety and negotiate minimum student work for cooperation in the managerial system.

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James L. W. Houle and Annette S. Kluck

This study explored the extent to which athletic identity, belief of financial sustainability through participation at the professional level, scholarship status, and career decision-making self-efficacy predicted career maturity in college athletes. In addition, whether the relationship between athletic identity and career maturity differed depending upon scholarship status, belief of sustaining oneself financially as a professional athlete, and career decision-making self-efficacy was explored. Participants were 221 student-athletes from a large southeastern university. Participants provided demographic information and completed the Athletic Identity Measurement Scale, Career Decision Self-Efficacy Scale—Short Form, and Career Decision Scale. Hierarchical regression analyses revealed that athletic identity was inversely related to career maturity. In addition, career decision-making self-efficacy was related to career maturity, with high career decision-making self-efficacy associated with higher career maturity. Future research is needed to further explore psychological variables that may explain the relationship between athletic identity and career maturity.

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Mike Weed

The findings of a 4-year research project that examined the potential for greater integration of sport and tourism policy in the UK are reported. The study is based on in-depth interviews and consultations with various agencies and identifies a number of tensions that exist within the sport-tourism policy process. An analysis of such tensions is used to review the five influences on sport-tourism policy proposed by Weed and Bull (1998). Six influences are now suggested: ideology, definitions, regional contexts, government policy, organizational culture and structure, and individuals. Using these revised influences, an assessment is made of the potential for a sustainable sport-tourism policy network in the UK. It is argued that such a network is not sustainable at the national level but may be possible at the regional level. The author suggests a need to empirically validate the international relevance of the concepts discussed utilizing Weed's (2001) model.

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Johanna M. Hurtubise, Cheryl Beech and Alison Macpherson

Context:

There is a lack of research on sex differences for severe injuries across a variety of sports at the collegiate level.

Objective:

To compare differences in injury severity and concussion between sexes and collegiate sports.

Design:

Descriptive epidemiological study.

Participants:

1,657 injuries were analyzed from collegiate teams at York University.

Data Collection and Analysis:

Injuries were assessed by a certified or student athletic therapist and were categorized based on degree of tissue and/or joint damage as either severe or nonsevere. Severe injuries included those with third degree damage, while all others were classified as nonsevere. Injury severity was compared between the sexes and across different sports using Pearson chisquare analysis. Logistic regression was used to assess the relative contribution of each covariate.

Results:

Males sustained 1,155 injuries, with 13.3% of them being severe, while females sustained only 502 injuries, 17.7% of which were severe. The odds of sustaining severe injuries among female athletes are 1.4 times the odds of male athletes (OR: 1.40, CI 1.05−1.86). Eleven percent of all female injuries were concussions—significantly more than males (χ2 = 11.03, p = .001). The odds of female athletes having a concussion are 1.9 times the odds of a male athlete (OR: 1.85, CI 1.28−2.67).

Conclusion:

Based on our analysis, females are at an increased risk of sustaining a severe injury, particularly concussions. These findings highlight the need for future research into sex and sport-specific risk factors. This may provide information for health care professionals, coaches, and athletes for the proper prevention, on-field care, and treatment of sport injuries.

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Janet A. Donahue, Jacqueline H. Gillis and Karen King

This paper reviews published research on behavior modification in sport and physical education. Following an introduction and some general information concerning operant technology, the actual review covers three areas: (a) behavior modification and coaching/teaching behavior, (b) behavior modification in physical education and sport environments, and (c) behavior modification and skill development. The studies reviewed document the significant value of using reinforcement principles to create or sustain specific coaching, teaching, and participant behaviors germane to sport and physical education.

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Joseph J. Crisco, Bethany J. Wilcox, Jason T. Machan, Thomas W. McAllister, Ann-Christine Duhaime, Stefan M. Duma, Steven Rowson, Jonathan G. Beckwith, Jeffrey J. Chu and Richard M. Greenwald

The purpose of this study was to quantify the severity of head impacts sustained by individual collegiate football players and to investigate differences between impacts sustained during practice and game sessions, as well as by player position and impact location. Head impacts (N = 184,358) were analyzed for 254 collegiate players at three collegiate institutions. In practice, the 50th and 95th percentile values for individual players were 20.0 g and 49.5 g for peak linear acceleration, 1187 rad/s2 and 3147 rad/s2 for peak rotational acceleration, and 13.4 and 29.9 for HITsp, respectively. Only the 95th percentile HITsp increased significantly in games compared with practices (8.4%, p = .0002). Player position and impact location were the largest factors associated with differences in head impacts. Running backs consistently sustained the greatest impact magnitudes. Peak linear accelerations were greatest for impacts to the top of the helmet, whereas rotational accelerations were greatest for impacts to the front and back. The findings of this study provide essential data for future investigations that aim to establish the correlations between head impact exposure, acute brain injury, and long-term cognitive deficits.

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Gary B. Wilkerson

Context:

Prevention of a lower extremity sprain or strain requires some basis for predicting that an individual athlete will sustain such an injury unless a modifiable risk factor is addressed.

Objective:

To assess the possible existence of an association between reaction time measured during completion of a computerized neurocognitive test battery and subsequent occurrence of a lower extremity sprain or strain.

Design:

Prospective cohort study.

Setting:

Preparticipation screening conducted in a computer laboratory on the day prior to initiation of preseason practice sessions.

Participants:

76 NCAA Division I-FCS football players.

Main Outcome Measures:

Lower extremity sprains and strains sustained between initiation of preseason practice sessions and the end of an 11-game season. Receiver operating characteristic analysis identified the optimal reaction time cut-point for discrimination between injured versus noninjured status. Stratified analyses were performed to evaluate any differential influence of reaction time on injury incidence between starters and nonstarters.

Results:

A total of 29 lower extremity sprains and strains were sustained by 23 of the 76 players. A reaction time cut-point of ≥ .545 s provided good discrimination between injured and noninjured cases: 74% sensitivity, 51% specificity, relative risk = 2.17 (90% CI: 1.10, 4.30), and odds ratio = 2.94 (90% CI: 1.19, 7.25).

Conclusions:

Neurocognitive reaction time appears to be an indicator of elevated risk for lower extremity sprains and strains among college football players, which may be modifiable through performance of exercises designed to accelerate neurocognitive processing of visual input.

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Tamara C. Valovich McLeod, Megan N. Houston and Cailee E. Welch

Concussions resulting from sports and recreational activities are a significant concern in the pediatric population. The number of children and adolescents sustaining sport-related concussions is increasing and, as a result, legislation has been passed in all 50 states to ensure appropriate recognition and referral of pediatric athletes following concussion. The developing brain may make the diagnosis, assessment, and management of concussion more challenging for health care providers and requires the use of specific age-appropriate assessment tools. Concussion management must also include considerations for cognitive and physical rest, a collaborative concussion management team that includes medical and school personnel, and more conservative stepwise progressions for returning to school and to physical activity.