Concussion injury management, perception, and knowledge in amateur field hockey
Background: Field hockey has a high risk for sports-related concussion (SRC) injuries due to the speed and intensity of the game, current rules, field surfaces and equipment composition. Head injuries are the second most common reported injury and up to 75% of SRCs go unreported or undetected. This increases the subsequent injury risk, long term health consequences and prolonged injury recovery.
Objectives: This study aimed to examine the prevalence of SRC in hockey players within the Southern Gauteng Hockey Association (SGHA) premier league. Concussion knowledge and attitudes of hockey players, coaches, umpires, and officials were also investigated.
Methods: A partially mixed sequential dominant status design (QUANT–qual) was used, divided into two phases. In Phase One hockey players, coaches, umpires, and technical officials (n=119) completed a modified RoCKAS-ST questionnaire. In Phase Two, a focus group discussion with umpires (n=3) and interviews with coaches (n=3) were conducted.
Results: Injuries to the shoulder, neck, head, and face were reported from stick use (n=98); ball use (n=102) and collisions (n=187). Only 19% of hockey players were diagnosed with SRC, indicating that many of these injuries were undetected or not reported. Responses from the focus group discussion and interviews indicated that coaches, umpires, and officials felt they had insufficient knowledge of SRC.
Conclusion: The recognition and management of on-field injuries require improvement to enhance the injury detection system.
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