Research into rugby injuries
Rugby teams in the Bath area are being asked to take part in new research into the causes of injury.
Researchers from the University of Bath are looking for community rugby teams to take part in a study to improve understanding about the risk of injury in the game.
The experts from the university's Department for Health are working in partnership with the Rugby Football Union and its injured players foundation on a surveillance project which aims to work out whether changes to the way the game is played could reduce the potential for injury.
Dr Keith Stokes and his colleagues have been collecting data for three years and are expanding the project to more than 100 clubs across England.
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Clubs taking part in the project are asked to submit a team list with details of the score and weather conditions for each first team match with more detailed information provided for any injury which results in a player missing one game or more.
All first team squad players are asked to complete a short questionnaire about their diet and training habits.
Dr Stokes said: "Data on rugby injuries in professional rugby players in England has been systematically collected for a decade, but most players turn out for their team at the weekend as recreational and amateur athletes.
"Our aim is to understand the injury risk in these people to allow the development of approaches to managing this risk.
"The data that we have collected so far shows a lower risk of injury in community rugby when compared with the professional game, but we are working towards ways in which we can help to reduce these risks further."
Dr Stephen Green, the team doctor at Kendal Rugby Club in Cumbria, which has been involved in the study since 2009, said: "The project is clearly of help to the community game overall and helps me benchmark our own injuries against those experienced by similar clubs.
"The data collection is relatively simple and does not interfere with pitchside care. I am pleased to be involved in this work."
To find out more, call Dr Simon Roberts on 01225 384531.