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Advocating a holistic approach for sport injury prevention and rehabilitation
  1. Afke van de Wouw
  1. WOUW Performance Coaching, Zeist, The Netherlands
  1. Correspondence to Afke van de Wouw, WOUW Performance Coaching, Zeist, The Netherlands; info{at}

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For competitive athletes, the chance of sustaining an injury during a regular season is fairly high.1 The incidence ranges from 0.5 to 34 injuries/1000 hours.2 One could argue that injury is an inevitable part of engaging in sport.

In prevention of sport injuries, as well as rehabilitation, the primary focus of sports medicine professionals is on the physical aspects, for example, muscle strength and flexibility. However, psychosocial variables also influence both injury risk and injury rehabilitation outcomes.1 A variety of psychosocial interventions both preinjury and postinjury have been developed and scientifically evaluated, but these are often overlooked.2

Therefore, this editorial advocates a holistic approach. It considers the physical, psychological and sociocultural factors influencing injury risk and rehabilitation and the effect of psychosocial interventions.

Psychosocial variables influencing injury risk

Preinjury models use different perspectives in explaining the factors influencing injury risk. Wiese-Bjornstal uses a biopsychosocial approach in her ‘Sport Injury Risk Profile’ (figure 1).3

Figure 1

Biopsychosocial sport injury risk profile, adapted from Wiese-Bjornstal.3

When focusing on the psychological risk factors and how they can potentially increase the risk of …

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  • Correction notice This article has been corrected since it published Online First. The author affiliation and correspondence has been updated.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; externally peer reviewed.