World Rugby, in a joint research project with the Otago Community Head Impact Detection study (ORCHID), Prevent Biometrics, New Zealand Rugby, Otago Rugby and the University of Otago, has published the first independent, peer-reviewed findings into community rugby following almost two years of trail-blazing research. The study measures over 17,000 separate head acceleration events across more than 300 players from senior rugby through to U13s level.
While rugby, like many other contact sports, is not risk free, the findings are a potential positive game changer in helping us to promote the game to schools and young players and encourage greater participation. The data will also help to reassure players (and especially parent / guardians of young players) and those responsible for Age Grade Rugby of the relative safety of the game, especially when coached correctly by trained coaches.
The headline findings from the research show that:
· Independent, peer-reviewed studies shows 86 per cent of forces on the head in community rugby are the same or less than those experienced in general exercise such as running and jumping
· Elite Extension and Ulster University study shows that most contact events in men’s and women’s elite rugby do not result in players experiencing significant force
The attached provides a summary of the Research findings and further detail is available on the World Rugby website.