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  1. N Perera1,
  2. P Keyzer2,
  3. J Dietrich2,
  4. K Norton4,
  5. B Sekendiz3,
  6. V Jones2,
  7. I Coyle2,
  8. C Finch1
  1. 1Australian Centre for Research into Injury in Sport and its Prevention (ACRISP), Federation University Australia, Ballarat, Australia
  2. 2Centre for Law Governance and Public Policy, Bond University, Gold Coast, Australia
  3. 3School of Medical and Applied Sciences, Central Queensland University, Rockhampton, Australia
  4. 4School of Health Sciences, University of South Australia, Adelaide, Australia


Background The Australian Adult Pre-Exercise Screening System (APSS) was developed as the national standard to promote quality control, consistency of practices across the industry and use of pre-exercise screening as a risk management tool to identify and manage health and injury risks associated with fitness activities. Stage 1 of APSS is compulsory and aims to identify those at high-risk of cardiovascular, metabolic or respiratory diseases and refer to medical/allied health professionals for clearance. Stage 2 and 3 are optional and screen for moderate or low risk individuals.

Objective To evaluate awareness and use of the APSS across the Australia-wide fitness industry.

Design A nationwide online self-report survey completed by fitness professionals.

Setting Australia-wide Fitness Industry using snowball sampling.

Participants 1178 adults, who own, manage or work in a registered/unregistered fitness business.

Main outcome measurements 1) Awareness and frequency of use of APSS, and 2) frequency of pre-exercise screening of any form and satisfaction of the pre-exercise screening being used.

Results 24% of respondents were insufficiently aware of the APSS, 47% aware and 29% were fully aware of APSS. Only 20% of respondents used APSS extremely frequently, 35% used APSS frequently and 45% used APSS infrequently. 65% of survey respondents always conducted a pre-exercise screening with their clients. 66% believed that their pre-exercise medical screenings of customers were good; 22% reported extremely good and 12% reported it was poor. Chi-squared tests identified significant relationships between conducting any pre-exercise screening and frequency of use of APSS (P<.001), satisfaction of pre-exercise screening and frequency of APSS use (P<.001), and awareness of APSS and the frequency of its use (P<.001).

Conclusions Frequency of use of APSS as a risk management tool by fitness professionals is strongly correlated with their awareness of it, their level of satisfaction of pre-exercising screening being used.

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