Sports injury prevention programmes from the sports physical therapist's perspective: An international expert Delphi approach

Luciana De Michelis Mendonça, Joke Schuermans, Sander Denolf, Christopher Napier, Natália F N Bittencourt, Andrés Romanuk, Igor Tak, Kristian Thorborg, Mario Bizzini, Carlo Ramponi, Colin Paterson, Martin Hägglund, Laurent Malisoux, Wesam Saleh A Al Attar, Mina Samukawa, Ernest Esteve, Ummkulthoum Bakare, Maria Constantinou, Anthony Schneiders, Alexandre Cavallieri GomesDidier Florentz, Derya Ozer Kaya, Syahmirza Indra Lesmana, Joar Harøy, Vesa Kuparinen, Nicola Philips, Walter Jenkins, Evi Wezenbeek, Erik Witvrouw

7 Citations (Scopus)


OBJECTIVE: To provide consensus on how to plan, organize and implement exercise-based injury prevention program (IPP) in sports.

DESIGN: Delphi.

SETTING: LimeSurvey platform.

PARTICIPANTS: Experienced sports physical therapists from the International Federation of Sports Physical Therapy member countries.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Factors related to sports IPP planning, organization and implementation.

RESULTS: We included 305 participants from 32 countries. IPP planning should be based on an athlete's injury history, on pre-season screening results, and on injury rates (respectively, 98%, 92%, 89% agreement). In total 97% participants agreed that IPP organization should depend on the athlete's age, 93% on the competition level, and 93% on the availability of low-cost materials. It was agreed that IPP should mainly be implemented in warm-up sessions delivered by the head or strength/conditioning coach, with physical training sessions and individual physical therapy sessions (respectively, 94%, 92%, 90% agreement).

CONCLUSION: Strong consensus was reached on (1) IPP based on the athlete's injury history, pre-season screening and evidence-based sports-specific injury rates; (2) IPP organization based on the athlete's age, competition level, and the availability of low-cost materials and (3) IPP implementation focussing on warm-up sessions implemented by the strength/conditioning coach, and/or individual prevention sessions by the physical therapist.

Original languageEnglish
JournalPhysical therapy in sport : official journal of the Association of Chartered Physiotherapists in Sports Medicine
Pages (from-to)146-154
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - May 2022


  • Athletic injuries
  • Consensus
  • Physical therapy
  • Warm-Up Exercise
  • Athletic Injuries/prevention & control
  • Humans
  • Physical Therapists
  • Sports


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