Implementation science to reduce sport and exercise-related injury

28 February 2019
Femke van Nassau

Although safety in sports and physical activity is an important prerequisite for continuing participation and maintenance of a healthy, physically active lifestyle, to date little effort has been placed upon moving evidence into preventive practice. Amongst researchers it is still often assumed that a program will disseminate itself after proven to be effective. Recently, however, there has been an increased recognition of the importance of theory-driven approaches to enhance implementation research. This manuscript aims to provide guidance for sports and physical activity injury researchers and practitioners to perform implementation research and practice. First, we will discuss the differences between research questions across the research spectrum and explain the ‘drop’ in effect when moving controlled evidence to a practical context. We will discuss two ways of increasing real-world effectiveness of preventive programs, i.e. through targeting the users’ behaviour or through revising the intervention. Finally, we will present various implementation frameworks and tools that can guide the reader in their own efforts towards implementation practice and research.

Reference: Verhagen E, van Nassau F. Implementation science to reduce the prevalence and burden of MSK disorders following sport and exercise-related injury. Best Pract Res Clin Rheumatol. 2019 Feb;33(1):188-201. doi: 10.1016/j.berh.2019.02.011. Epub 2019 Feb 28. Review.