“Part and parcel of the game?”: Physical education teachers, head trauma, and the Rugby Football Union’s ‘Headcase’ initiative

Sophie Hill, Rory Magrath, Adam White

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Purpose: This article provides an analysis of British physical education (PE) teachers’ knowledge of and attitudes toward concussion in rugby.
Methods: Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 15 qualified PE teachers responsible for rugby delivery in their respective schools (and who also hold a minimum of a Level 2 Rugby Football Union (RFU) accredited coaching award, and have completed the organization’s concussion awareness training initiative, ‘Headcase’).
Findings: Due to the absence of appropriate training – both in coaching qualifications and broader teacher training – these teachers lack understanding of signs, symptoms, and aftercare of suspected concussion. Findings also indicate that ‘Headcase’ may be problematic in providing adequate education to ensure PE teachers are adequately prepared should serious injury arise.
Implications: Given the findings of this research, we recommend: (1)‘Headcase’ be delivered by a qualified practitioner or form a central part of existing coaching qualifications; (2) Mandatory tackle training to be provided to PE teachers; (3) Mandatory injury logs to be kept by every school in order to better understand the frequency of injury in PE.
Original languageEnglish
JournalManaging Sport and Leisure
Publication statusPublished - 25 Nov 2020

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