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J Athl Train. 1993 Spring; 28(1): 43–47.
PMCID: PMC1317890

Athletic Trainers' Attitudes and Judgments of Injured Athletes' Rehabilitation Adherence

A. Craig Fisher, PhD
A. Craig Fisher is Professor and Chair of the Department of Exercise and Sport Sciences, School of Health Sciences and Human Performance, Ithaca College, Ithaca, NY 14850.
Sharon A. Mullins, MS
Sharon A. Mullins is Teacher of Physical Education at Nathan T. Hall Elementary School and Coach at Newark Valley High School Newark Valley, NY.


Certified athletic trainers (ATCs) in District 2 (n=187) of the National Athletic Trainers' Association (NATA) were asked to complete a questionnaire that assessed the attitudes and judgments of ATCs concerning numerous factors presumed to influence sport injury rehabilitation. Gender and experience differences in ATCs' attitudes and judgments about rehabilitation adherence were examined. Successful and unsuccessful adherence strategies also were reported. The questionnaire consisted of 60 statements that were categorized into seven scales: athletic trainer's influence, environmental influences, athlete's personality, pain tolerance, selfmotivation, goals and incentives, and significant others. There were no significant differences for either gender or experience of ATCs on any of the seven scales. An analysis of questionnaire item responses revealed the following as factors ATCs deemed important to injury rehabilitation: a) good rapport and communication between the ATC and the injured athlete, b) explanation of the injury and rehabilitation regimen, c) convenience and accessibility of the rehabilitation facility, d) rehabilitation sessions planned around the athletes' busy schedules, e) athletes' beliefs that the program is worth pursuing, f) personal supervision and regular monitoring, g) need for injured athletes to see immediate results, and h) support from significant others. ATCs reported education, goal setting, encouragement, monitoring progress, and support systems as successful strategies. Threats and rehabilitation without monitoring were reported as unsuccessful strategies.

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Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
  • Fisher AC. Adherence to sports injury rehabilitation programmes. Sports Med. 1990 Mar;9(3):151–158. [PubMed]
  • Friedman IM, Litt IF. Adolescents' compliance with therapeutic regimens. Psychological and social aspects and intervention. J Adolesc Health Care. 1987 Jan;8(1):52–67. [PubMed]
  • Geertsen HR, Gray RM, Ward JR. Patient non-compliance within the context of seeking medical care for arthritis. J Chronic Dis. 1973 Nov;26(11):689–698. [PubMed]

Articles from Journal of Athletic Training are provided here courtesy of National Athletic Trainers Association