Background Injury tracking systems are becoming increasingly popular in the realm of sports medicine. Identifying the prevalence and types of injuries can contribute to the identification of risk factors associated with sport specific injuries, as well as lead to the development of injury prevention programs, educational material, rule changes, and improved protective equipment.
Objective To describe the process of creating an injury tracking system for volleyball in an effort to track variables associated with injury patterns.
Design A software program containing over 1000variables was developed by certified athletic trainers and public health experts. Variables included demographic information, environmental factors, and sport specific movements. Standardized definitions (ie, ‘injury’) were established and pilot tested for reliability and validity purposes using internally developed case studies.
Setting Data was collected via a web-based software program through the university academic program.
Participants Participants included female volleyball players between 14–18 years of age.
Results Analysis of the results identified common injuries associated with volleyball and their associated mechanisms. These findings directly led to the implementation of educational programs designed to prevent such injuries from occurring in the future. Furthermore, internal assessments of the program development noted the requirement of frequent variable modifications, standardized training necessities, and ongoing discussion to assure accurate data input.
Conclusions The development of an injury tracking system specific to volleyball requires time, funding, ongoing re-evaluation, standardized terms, training for data collectors, and plans for implementing the findings into practical information for coaches, players, parents, and health care providers. When developed successfully, the information collected can prove to be valuable.
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