home1EXETER, NH – Many injury prevention programs have shown to help reduce leg and foot injuries in sports; but less than 10% of high school coaches implement the programs into their practice and game routines, according to a new study. Coaches are aware of the programs, but simply chose not to use them because they seem too complex or do not offer an advantage over existing practices.

A recent article published in Reuters Health showcased injury prevention programs, most which include stretching and strengthening exercises focused on the hips and thighs. Others focus on jump-training to promote landing softly. They’re designed as a 15 to 20 minute warm up, three to four times per week before practices or games.

The study took 66 head coaches for basketball and soccer at 15 high schools in Oregon and had them complete an online survey of injury prevention program (IPP) knowledge, attitudes and behaviors. It found that 34 coaches out of the 66 were aware of IPPs, 14 reported using one of the programs with their team and six said they implemented the IPP exactly as designed.

Dr. Siegel, the Director of Sports Medicine at Access Sports Medicine & Orthopaedics, has been a leader in the development of Injury Prevention Programs at Seacoast area schools for many years. Access Sports Medicine has provided training and implementation of IPP to the coaches and students of many local and regional high schools through our athletic trainers. Dr. Siegel initiated these programs through education of the benefits programs like these can provide.

“One injury can impact the success of a whole team. There are few, if any, coaches who have not experienced the loss of a key player in season. Many of these injuries are preventable and several of injury prevention programs have conclusively shown to reduce catastrophic knee injuries,” said Dr. Siegel. “Luckily, many coaches in this area are very receptive to implementing these injury prevention programs.”

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