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Mitigating the Antecedents of Sports-Related Injury Through Yoga

26 September 2018


Injury risk among athletes is an epidemic. The psychological and physical loads imposed on athletes through psychosocial stressors and training regimens significantly increase athletes’ injury risk. This feasibility study assessed whether a 10-week yoga intervention could be implemented successfully and mitigate antecedents of sports injury. Using a prospective, non-experimental design, 31 male soccer players attending a college in the Pacific Northwest enrolled in the intervention. The Recovery-Stress Questionnaire for Athletes (RESTQ-Sport) and Psychological and Physical Stress Indicator (PPSI) were completed at 3 time-points before and after the yoga intervention. The RESTQ-Sport scales, identified as strongest predictors for injury, were hypothesized to be mitigated through yoga. Two stress-related scales were significant in the hypothesized direction: Injury and Fatigue. The general recovery scale General Well-Being was significant at one time-point, but in the opposite direction as hypothesized. No PPSI scales were significant; however, 13 of 15 subscales moved in the opposite direction as hypothesized. Positive findings are discussed and explanations for unexpected changes are explored, along with study limitations. Results suggest that yoga can be successfully integrated into the athletic program of soccer players and provisionally support the potential of a yoga intervention to mitigate two significant antecedents of injury, namely, injury and fatigue.


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