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Injury Mechanisms and Predictive Measures in Surfing Manoeuvers

Surfing is a sport where complex manoeuvres, including acrobatic air movements and landings, are increasing in frequency. Implications of such actions are the risk of injury, especially to the lower extremities. Previous studies, although few in number, have shown that these injuries are problematic for competitive surfers, suggesting more research into prevention is required.

This project takes an investigative injury prevention approach, aiming to describe injury mechanisms in competitive surfing (Part I), that will also serve as an indicative measure of capacity to determine measures that can be used to predict injury risk for surfing athletes (Part III). The second part of this work is to develop a sport specific test for surfing, which aims to be a valid predictor for injury risk in aerial surfing manoeuvres as well as performance of surfing manoeuvres. The methodology used for this project is chosen based on the circumstance of a sport with dynamic characteristics, including video analysis of previously captured data (injuries occurring while executing surfing manoeuvres), interviews with injured athletes, focus groups (idea generation and evaluation), reliability tests of the assessments and a longitudinal follow up study of injuries with intrinsic baseline measures over a 6 months period. This project has a unique longitudinal design encompassing an investigative phase, developmental phase, assessment phase and follow up that differs from the primarily cross sectional design seen in studies of surfing injuries to date, and will provide a foundation of information crucial for further work on injury prevention in competitive surfing.

Funding agency

Surfing Australia

Project duration



Miss Lina Lundgren
Dr Jeremy Sheppard
Dr Sophia Nimphius
Professor Rob Newton

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