Reidar P. Lystad *, Petra L. Graham ** and Roslyn G. Poulos ***
(*) Department of Chiropractic, Faculty of Science, Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia
(**) Department of Statistics, Faculty of Science, Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia
(***) School of Public Health and Community Medicine, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia
P. Lystad, R., L. Graham, P., G. Poulos, R. (2015). Injury risk perception in Taekwondo. A Cross-Sectional Study. International Journal of Sport Psychology, 46(3), 244-257. doi:10.7352/IJSP.2015.46.244
The purpose of this study was to examine the perception of injury risk in the taekwondo community. Members of the taekwondo community (N=298) completed an online survey in which they rated the perceived risk of injury across a range of different sports, including taekwondo. Overall, the respondents perceived the risk of injury in their own sport to be lower than that in other collision and contact sports, including popular combat sports such as boxing, mixed martial arts, judo, and karate. Males (odds ratio 0.50; P=0.006) and instructors/coaches (odds ratio 0.34; P<0.001) perceived the risk of injury to be significantly less compared to their female and athlete counterparts. Because behaviour is determined by perceived rather than actual risk, underestimation of injury risk and concomitant overestimation of ability to negotiate risk may lead to an increased frequency of injury. Therefore, a comprehensive injury prevention strategy for combat sports such as taekwondo should ensure that erroneous beliefs and attitudes about injury risk among participants are addressed.
Keywords: Athletic injuries, Comparative optimism, Perceived comparative risk