THE PREVALENCE AND RISK FACTORS OF INCIDENTAL INJURIES AMONG PHYSICAL EDUCATION TEACHER EDUCATION STUDENTS IN THE UNIVERSITY OF BOTSWANA
Background: Sports injuries are a considerable problem among physical education teacher education (PETE) students. The prevalence of incidental injuries amongst physical education student teachers is relatively high and has shown to be the number one leading factor for barriers in the learning process of students. Despite this, little research has been done to assess incidental injuries among physical education teacher education students.
Aim: The aim of this research study was to estimate the prevalence of incidental injuries among physical education teacher education students in the University of Botswana and establish factors associated with occurrence of these injuries.
Methods: The study was carried out between February and April 2020 on PETE students doing Year 1 to Year 4 in the Department of Physical Education, Faculty of Education in the University of Botswana. A self-administered questionnaire designed to solicit information on participants’ demographic characteristics, risk factors,level of awareness regarding incidental injuries and their severity was distributed to 197 students. Data was analyzed using SPSS version 25.
Results: A total of 145 students in the age range 19-25 years with mean age and standard deviation 21.25 ± 1.42 completed the study questionnaire. The prevalence of incidental injuries was 21.2%. The prevalence of injuries was found to be high in males than females. The association of age group, Body Mass Index, level of study, tobacco smoke, alcohol intake and physical exercise were not statistically significant. Falls (29%), ignorance of rules (3.2%), poor playing skills (9.7%), fatigue (6.5%), unsafe equipment (19.3%), slip (3.2%) and trip (6.5%) resulted in injuries. Most injuries were sustained by Year 4 students (25.8%).
Conclusion(s): The prevalence of injuries is relatively high among University of Botswana PETE students. The study revealed a number of factors that led to injuries among PETE students. Based on these causes there is need to emphasis the issue of health and safety in the curriculum and during training of the students.
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