Tackling. Concussion. Doping. Rugby is a sport which has had to confront some big topics in the public domain over the past few years, and has persistently shown significant commitment to ensuring the welfare of its participants, be it through research, education, or otherwise.
As a collision sport, injuries are unavoidable – and so there has been much in the form of injury research in the game, with the RFU in England, the NZRU in New Zealand and the SARU in South Africa in particular, providing examples of high quality surveillance research over the past few years. World Rugby, the governing body, deserve much credit for clear and effective leadership – and have been at the forefront of ensuring player welfare through taking account of this research and enforcing rule changes, most notable when it comes to dangerous tackles and the scrum.
With its inclusion in the Olympics however, and with more lucrative prizes, nations and teams have been searching for the marginal gains of sporting performance, which as a result has provided a great bulk of research, some of which has been published in the BJSM.
As such, rugby medicine has a high quality and diverse range of research topics – the vast majority of which are applicable to both team, and individual sports – and may be of interest to the majority of the BJSM readership. Interested in knowing more?
The University of Bath, who have been at the forefront of rugby medicine through their work with the RFU, have organised a two-day conference, on September 13th & 14th, at which much of this research will be presented. Topics include: injury prevention; dietary supplementation; skill development; long-term player welfare; and concussion – which will be brought to life by a fantastic array of speakers including Prof Ross Tucker, Prof Graeme Close, and Dr Martin Hagglund amongst others.
Whilst tickets are available online, if you can’t make it in person, they will be live-streaming the talks for free via their website, with even an opportunity to join in the conversation through the usual social media channels via #RSNlive16. BJSM+ will be tweeting from the event and helping to widen the conversation – we look forward to engaging with the SEM community on a wide range of issues.
Can’t wait? Here are some seminal #RugbyMedicine papers to whet your appetite:
- Rugby World Cup 2015: World Rugby injury surveillance study
- Injury risk and a tackle ban in youth Rugby Union: reviewing the evidence and searching for targeted, effective interventions. A critical review
- Professional Rugby Union players have a 60% greater risk of time loss injury after concussion: a 2-season prospective study of clinical outcomes
- Results of a nationally implemented de novo cardiac screening programme in elite rugby players in England
- Does long-distance air travel associated with the Sevens World Series increase players’ risk of injury?
We look forward to your contribution to #RSNlive2016