Background Injury prevention exercise programmes (IPEPs) have been shown to prevent and reduce injuries in team sports (Silvers-Granelli et al. 2015, Owoeye et al. 2014). Implementation and adoption of IPEPs in team sport is a process is multifaceted and complex (Donaldson & Finch 2013). The Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) has produced an IPEP (GAA 15) specifically tailored to Gaelic football.
Objective To investigate the injury prevention knowledge, beliefs and perceptions of GAA coaches and estimate the implementation rates of the ‘GAA 15'
Design Cross-sectional survey.
Setting Gaelic football clubs in the Counties of Mayo and London.
Patients (or Participants) 26 GAA coaches who responded to email invitations to participate in this study.
Interventions (or Assessment of Risk Factors) Online web based survey related to Gaelic football injuries and injury prevention.
Main Outcome Measurements Understanding and perceptions of injury prevention in general; implementation of the ‘GAA 15’; and the motivation and support from the GAA and their County Boards.
Results All but one coach (96%) believed that an IPEP would reduce injuries to players during training and matches. Although all coaches utilise selected components of an IPEP such as strength, balance, and core exercises during the warm-up or training, only 2 coaches reported using the ‘GAA 15’. Coaches feel that they do not get enough support and exposure from the GAA and their County boards with regards to injury prevention strategies. The coaches supported the use of online resources, phone applications and group training programmes.
Conclusions Despite wide acceptance of the benefits of an IPEP, few coaches use one in Gaelic Football. The results of this study provide valuable information on the knowledge, perceptions and beliefs of Gaelic football club coaches regarding injury prevention. This information should be used to optimise access to education and delivery of the ‘GAA 15’.
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