SINGAPORE RUGBY UNION INJURY SURVEILLANCE: HOW DO WE COMPARE TO PREVIOUS FINDINGS IN RUGBY UNION AND DO WE NEED TO IMPROVE?

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Abstract

Background

Rugby union is a full contact sport in which injuries are a commonplace occurrence. Despite its increasing popularity in South East Asia, the obvious differences in physical attributes of players and environment, there have not been any previous analyses of the injury data so far.

Objectives

To examine whether rugby union injury rates in Singapore are similar to those reported in other countries and to assess whether the current system of data collection is both accurate and efficient.

Design

A retrospective analysis of injury data collected from an injury audit conducted over the 2015/16 Rugby union season.

Setting

2015/16 Singapore Rugby Union domestic league.

Participants

Players from 5 teams, with 15 adults (>18 yrs) players from each team on the field at any one time for the duration of an 80 minute game.

Interventions

No interventions were implemented during this study.

Main Outcome Measurements

Total exposure and injury rates (per 1000 player h), and uptake of the current reporting system.

Results

Data from a total of 28 of 86 (32%) matches were reported, including a total of 558.6 player hours. Injury incidence (136.1 per 1000 player hours) was higher than previously reported, with muscle (50.1), concussion (21.5), shoulder (14.4), knee (12.6) and facial soft tissue (10.8) injuries being most common.

Conclusions

The high injury rate compared to previous studies in rugby union may have been biased by the low reporting rates. A reporting rate of 32% significantly limits the interpretation of the injury surveillance in Singapore. The low reporting rates may be due to an antiquated system of collecting the data and reporting injuries, but a newer system of reporting injuries is being developed.

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