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PESS research continues to include analysis of schools rugby injuries

New research at University of Limerick, which looks at injury incidence in the Men’s and Women’s All-Ireland League, has now been expanded to allow the IRFU to begin to monitor seasonal trends in rugby injuries also across the schools game. 

The results of the analysis, jointly conducted by the IRFU and UL, highlighted the type, nature and severity of both match and training injuries occurring across the amateur game in Ireland. 

By monitoring this information, injury trends may emerge which will aid in the development and implementation of future evidence-based injury prevention strategies in order to minimise injury risk and enhance player welfare.

Data was compiled across 644 matches (vs 418 last season) from 32 All-Ireland League and Women’s All-Ireland League clubs (25 male teams and seven female teams) and 95 Senior Cup schools matches from 11 schools. A total of 959 male, 195 female and 305 senior cup school boy players were registered with the IRIS project for the 2018/19 season.

Pictured: Eimear Considine PESS Graduate, PE Teacher and Irish Womens Rugby Player - Picture credit: Sportsfile

 

Speaking on the analysis, Dr Rod McLoughlin, IRFU Medical Director, said: “This year’s report allows us to compare the 2018/19 results with those from the 2017/18 season, enabling us to begin to see some trends. 

This year’s data is from a significantly greater number of teams, including schools rugby, and it will enable us to guide the prevention and management of injuries.

"The IRFU is committed to ongoing longitudinal research to further enhance our understanding of the nature and severity of injuries in the game.”

IRIS co-principal investigator at the University of Limerick, Dr Tom Comyns, explained that “the project has continued to expand and of interest, this year’s reports include data from the school setting. This long term project will help improve the health and wellbeing of amateur players at all levels in Ireland.” 

The IRIS co-principal investigator said that the addition of schools surveillance this year “provides crucial insight into injury within the schools senior game in Ireland. The project in the future will also report on the incidence, nature and severity of injuries in schools junior cup, and underage amateur rugby.”
- Andrew Carey

Injury Frequency 
A male player would have to play 15 matches to sustain one injury
A female player would have to play 27 matches to sustain one injury 
A Senior Cup Schools player would have to play 13 matches to sustain one injury. 

Senior Club Injury Event
59%  of match & training injuries a result of the tackle
48%  of tackle related injuries sustained by the ball carrier
52% of tackle related injuries sustained by the tackler

Training Injury Event
Majority of male training injuries a result of tackling and contact drills
Majority of female training injuries a result of non-contact/set piece drills
Majority of senior schools training injuries a result of contact drills  

Male Club Match Injury Occurrence
5.3/1,000 player hours: concussion
4.1/1,000 player hours: ankle ligament sprain
3.9/1,000 player hours: hamstring strain  

Female Club Match Injury Occurrence
5.3/1,000 player hours: concussion
3.4/1,000 player hours: ankle ligament sprain
2.9/1,000 player hours: knee MCL sprians

Schools Senior Cup Match Injury Occurrence
11.4/1,000 player hours: ankle ligament sprain
7.2/1,000 player hours: shoulder 

Dislocations/ subluxations
6.6/1,000 player hours: concussion