Date of Graduation

12-2015

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science

Degree Level

Undergraduate

Department

Health, Human Performance and Recreation

Advisor

Elbin, R.J.

Reader

Fort, Inza

Second Reader

Eddy, Terry

Abstract

Background: Concussion injuries are growing in number among athletes across the nation. The majority of concussion research to date focuses on collegiate and high school athletes. University athletes make up a small percentage of the student body population compared to the large number of students that participate in club and intramural sports. These students participate in the same sports, assume the same risks, and may experience the same adverse effects of concussion, often without appropriate medical oversight.

Purpose: The purpose of this study was to determine if concussion is a problem among intramural and club sport participants, if these participants are experiencing academic difficulties post-concussion and if they have medical coverage during their participation.

Study Design: This study used a descriptive, quantitative survey-based design.

Methods: Participants included college students participating in intramural and club sports at eight universities. University recreation departments sent out a 36-item survey using their participant database. This survey assessed demographic questions (e.g., age, sport, previous concussion history), SRC knowledge, barriers to medical care for SRC and commitment level to intramural or club sports.

Results: Medical coverage for club games was reported by 62.4% (542/868) and 53.7% (917/1,709) of intramural participants. Approximately 7.3% (63/863) of club sport participants reported sustaining a medically diagnosed concussion during club sport participation. Academic difficulties following concussion were reported by 61.9% (39/63) of these participants. Less than two percent (1.9%, 32/1,710) of intramural participants reported sustaining a medically diagnosed concussion during sport participation. Academic difficulties following concussion were reported by 65.6% (21/32) of intramural respondents.

Discussion: University and club sport participants also experience academic difficulties following concussion. Increased efforts are needed to provide academic accommodations and proper medical care for university club and recreation participants that sustain a concussion.

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