Objective To investigate differences in risk-taking behaviours and sensation seeking needs between collegiate student-athletes with and without a history of sport-related concussion (SRC).
Design Cross-sectional quantitative study.
Setting Four National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) universities.
Participants A total of 1,398 (68%) of 2,055 collegiate student-athletes completed the survey. There were 146 participants excluded due to: age<18, current SRC/acute musculoskeletal injury, SRC within 3-months, non-NCAA, non-SRC, and incomplete survey. Therefore, 1,252 subjects from 18 sports were included.
Assessment of risk factors A10-minute survey was administered that included demographic information, SRC history, Barratt Impulsiveness Scale (BIS) for risk-taking, and Brief Sensation Seeking Scale (BSSS). The independent variable was SRC history: 0(n=938), 1(n=205), 2+(n=109).
Outcome measures The dependent variables were BIS total risk-taking impulsivity and BSSS total sensation seeking scores.
Main results Significant differences were found between SRC groups for the totalrisk-taking impulsivity [F(1,227)=7.15,p=0.00] and sensation seeking [F(1,214)=4.53,p=0.01] variables. Total risk-taking impulsivity was significantly higher for the 2+ SRC group compared to the 0 SRC group (MD±95%CI=0.18 ± 0.11,p=0.00) and the 1 SRC group (MD±95%CI=0.15 ± 0.12,p=0.02). Total sensation seeking scores were significantly higher for the 2+ SRC group compared to the 0 SRC group (MD±95%CI=0.19 ± 0.17, p=0.03).
Conclusions Total risk-taking and sensation seeking scores were higher for collegiate student-athletes with a history of multiple SRC. This finding could be useful when implementing behaviour modifications for safer play. Future longitudinal research should adopt a pre-/post-test design to determine if increased risk-taking and sensation seeking are SRC risk-factors or if multiple SRCs cause an increase in psychological variables.
Competing interests None.
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