1. Athletic trainers (ATs) lack confidence in their ability to use psychosocial strategies and referrals for injured athletes.
2. Stress/anxiety, anger, and treatment adherence problems are the primary psychological responses athletes may present upon injury.
3. ATs desire to increase their knowledge and understanding of psychosocial strategies while caring for injured athletes, including understanding motivation, using effective communication, and setting realistic goals.
The article titled "Psychosocial aspects of athletic injuries as perceived by athletic trainers" presents a mixed-methods study that aims to determine the psychological responses and coping behaviors athletes may present to athletic trainers (ATs), psychosocial strategies ATs currently use with their athletes, psychosocial strategies ATs deem important to learn more about, and ATs' current practices in referring athletes to counseling or sport psychology services. The study involved 215 ATs who completed an online survey containing both quantitative and qualitative items.
The article provides valuable insights into the perceptions of ATs regarding the psychosocial aspects of athletic injuries. The results suggest that stress/anxiety, anger, and treatment adherence problems are the primary psychological responses athletes may present upon injury. Adherence and having a positive attitude were identified as key determinants in defining athletes' successful coping with their injuries. The top three selected psychosocial strategies were keeping the athlete involved with the team, using short-term goals, and creating variety in rehabilitation exercises. The top three rated psychosocial strategies ATs deem important to learn more about were understanding motivation, using effective communication, and setting realistic goals.
However, there are some potential biases in this study that need to be considered. Firstly, the response rate was only 22.50%, which raises concerns about selection bias. It is possible that those who responded to the survey had different perceptions than those who did not respond. Secondly, the sample size is relatively small, which limits generalizability. Thirdly, there is a potential for social desirability bias since participants may have provided answers they believed were socially acceptable rather than their true opinions.
Moreover, there are some missing points of consideration in this study. For instance, it does not explore how cultural differences may impact athletes' psychological responses and coping behaviors or how these factors may vary across different sports or levels of competition. Additionally, it does not address how gender or age may influence athletes' psychosocial responses and coping behaviors.
Furthermore, the article does not provide evidence for some of the claims made. For example, it is stated that adherence and having a positive attitude are key determinants in defining athletes' successful coping with their injuries, but there is no explanation or evidence to support this claim. Similarly, it is suggested that keeping the athlete involved with the team, using short-term goals, and creating variety in rehabilitation exercises are effective psychosocial strategies, but there is no empirical evidence provided to support these claims.
In conclusion, while the article provides valuable insights into ATs' perceptions of the psychosocial aspects of athletic injuries, there are potential biases and missing points of consideration that need to be addressed. Additionally, some claims made in the article lack empirical evidence. Therefore, further research is needed to explore these factors more comprehensively and provide a more nuanced understanding of how ATs can effectively address the psychosocial aspects of athletic injuries.