A new Norwegian study shows that young female football players suffer from a 70% increased risk of injury if they have perceived stress earlier in life.
In the 2005 season, ressearchers from the Oslo Sports Trauma Research Center analyzed a set of psychological characteristics in a 14-16 year-old football girls, and 1430 young females were followed up for injuries throughout an 8-month season.
During the pre-season period, every player was asked to fill out a comprehensive questionnaire comprising players´ perception of goal orientation (motivation), training climate, stress and stress reactions as well as stress coping strategies. By the end of the season, it was found that stress perceived throughout the last year was a significant predictor for injury risk.
These are interesting findings from a young population, and this study supports earlier investigations by demonstrating that high life stress has an impact on new injuries. In order to attenuate this risk factor among young female football players, coaches must be aware of the total life stress situation of the player, and they should avoid and if present buffer high levels of stress among their players by creating a positive motivational climate.
This study was conducted by Kathrin Steffen, Anne Marte Pensgaard and Roald Bahr.
Read the article here.