Background Recently, prevention of anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injuries has gained attention. However, there has not been any report on a consciousness survey of sports instructors regarding ACL injuries in Japan.
Objective The purpose of the present study was to conduct a consciousness survey regarding ACL injuries of instructors who coached junior-high school handball team and to ascertain their current knowledge or awareness.
Participants The subjects of the survey were instructors who coached teams that participated in the national junior-high school handball championships in Japan (the subjects were 102 coaches (69 males and 33 females) from 70 teams).
Methods The questions were the following: (1) Do you know what an ACL injury is? (2) Have you had players with ACL injuries? (3) Do you know the mechanisms of ACL injury? (4) Do you know about the training programs for ACL injury prevention? In addition, the instructors coaching experience in handball was surveyed.
Results The instructors had a mean of approximately 10 years of coaching experience, and 89.2% of the instructors knew about ACL injuries, 49% knew the mechanisms of ACL injury, and 13.7% knew about training programs for ACL injury prevention. The percentage of instructors who had players with ACL injuries was 27.5%.
Conclusion Puberty has been reported to be a suitable time to introduce programs for ACL injury prevention. Although most handball instructors who coached in the Japanese national championships knew what an ACL injury is, only 14% knew about training programs for ACL injury prevention. As sports medicine physicians, we can help reduce the incidence of ACL injuries through lectures to educate instructors about the mechanisms of ACL injury and training methods for ACL injury prevention.