Year of Publication

2017

Date of Thesis

06-2017

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science

Department

Exercise and Sport Sciences

Abstract

This study examined five psychological variables that have been reported to predict injury in collegiate athletes at the Division I level in an NCAA Division III population. It was hypothesized that 1) injuries sustained and the number of days missed due to injury would be predicted by life stress, social support, coping resources, trait anxiety, and hardiness; and 2) that life stress would be the strongest psychological predictor. Male and female participants (n = 125) from six Division III sport teams completed surveys measuring each variable, as well as demographical questions regarding gender, sport type, year in school, and previous injury. Participants consented to have their injury data anonymously reported to the researcher. Information was collected towards the beginning and end of each sport season. Two hierarchical multiple regressions were completed, utilizing all psychological and demographical variables. The first regression was performed using the ‘number of injuries’ as the dependent variable, while the second was performed using ‘days missed due to injury’ as the dependent variable. Results indicated that hardiness accounted for 17% of the variance in days missed, and previous injury accounted for 11% of the variance in the number of injuries sustained. These findings resulted in the rejection of both hypotheses. Further research exploring the potential influence of these psychological predictors on injury frequency at the Division III level is needed to determine if Division III student-athletes’ injuries can be predicted by the same psychological variables that have been reported to predict injury at the Division I level.

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