Preventing sports injuries during the physical education teacher curriculum, students’ perspectives and recommendations on prevention

S. Sander Bliekendaal*, M. Maarten Barendrecht, J. Janine H. Stubbe, C. Caroline Bolling, E. Evert Verhagen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


The objective of this study was to describe, from the Physical Education Teacher Education (PETE) students’ perspective, sports injury prevention practices and map their suggestions for its improvement. In this qualitative study, we conducted 21 semi-structured interviews with PETE students from four different PETE schools in the Netherlands, which were transcribed verbatim and analysed these using the thematic analysis method. Four main themes were extracted from the data, which described the applied preventive strategies, the critical factors for successful injury prevention, motives for injury prevention, and recommendations on prevention. All the participants described using various preventive measures. They described injury prevention as a standard part of daily life and approached it in a multi-faceted and dynamic way. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle and balancing load and recovery were consistently described as essential injury prevention strategies. According to the participants, the critical factors to successfully apply injury prevention were: communication, learning what works, self-management, shared responsibilities, and social support. The main motives for injury prevention were to care for the body and perform well (e.g., academic success; sports). Given the participants, injury prevention could be improved, mainly by enhancing the PETE program’s load management (e.g., schedules) and offering injury prevention education (e.g., theory; practical skills). This study provided insight into how injury prevention is shaped in practice, identified critical factors for successful injury prevention and motives for injury prevention, and mapped recommendations for its improvement from the target population. These findings support the development of context-driven preventive strategies in the PETE population.

Original languageEnglish
Article number276
Pages (from-to)2162-2172
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Physical Education and Sport
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2022

Bibliographical note

This study's preparation was supported by NWO-NRO funding (reference number: 40518865231).

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