Too much information? A document analysis of sport safety resources from key organisations

Sheree Bekker, Caroline F Finch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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OBJECTIVES: The field of sport injury prevention has seen a marked increase in published research in recent years, with concomitant proliferation of lay sport safety resources, such as policies, fact sheets and posters. The aim of this study was to catalogue and categorise the number, type and topic focus of sport safety resources from a representative set of key organisations.

DESIGN: Cataloguing and qualitative document analysis of resources available from the websites of six stakeholder organisations in Australia.

SETTING: This study was part of a larger investigation, the National Guidance for Australian Football Partnerships and Safety (NoGAPS) project.

PARTICIPANTS: The NoGAPS study provided the context for a purposive sampling of six organisations involved in the promotion of safety in Australian football. These partners are recognised as being highly representative of organisations at national and state level that reflect similarly in their goals around sport safety promotion in Australia.

RESULTS: The catalogue comprised 284 resources. More of the practical and less prescriptive types of resources, such as fact sheets, than formal policies were found. Resources for the prevention of physical injuries were the predominant sport safety issue addressed, with risk management, environmental issues and social behaviours comprising other categories. Duplication of resources for specific safety issues, within and across organisations, was found.

CONCLUSIONS: People working within sport settings have access to a proliferation of resources, which creates a potential rivalry for sourcing of injury prevention information. Important issues that are likely to influence the uptake of safety advice by the general sporting public include the sheer number of resources available, and the overlap and duplication of resources addressing the same issues. The existence of a large number of resources from reputable organisations does not mean that they are necessarily evidence based, fully up to date or even effective in supporting sport safety behaviour change.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e010877
JournalBMJ Open
Issue number5
Early online date6 May 2016
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2016


  • Athletic Injuries/prevention & control
  • Australia/epidemiology
  • Diffusion of Innovation
  • Health Behavior
  • Health Policy
  • Health Promotion
  • Health Resources
  • Humans
  • Information Dissemination
  • Internet
  • Organizations
  • Qualitative Research
  • Soccer/injuries


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