Australian Centre for Research into Injury in Sport and its Prevention (ACRISP)

News and events

Hospital-treated injury trends - a free presentation

The Australian Centre for Research into Injury in Sport and its Prevention (ACRISP) is very pleased to welcome Dr. Janneke Berecki-Gisolf to Ballarat.

Tuesday 25th July 2017, 9.30am-10.30am
Lecture Theatre C001, C Building
SMB Campus, Lydiard Street, Ballarat

Please register by emailing Emily Hearnshaw on

In Victoria, injury-related hospital admissions have increased between 2006/7 and 2015/16. This could signify an alarming injury trend. Alternatively, there is a range of other factors that could increase the observed number of injury admissions over time. These include population ageing and increased frailty in the oldest age groups. Hospital admission policy changes can also affect observed trends, by introducing artefact. Furthermore, any particular cause or setting (such as transport injury, falls, work-related injury) can increase disproportionally and impact on the overall trends.

This presentation will address these issues and present underlying injury trends for Victoria. The Victorian Injury Surveillance Unit (VISU)'s data request services and role in injury prevention will also be discussed.

Dr. Janneke Berecki-Gisolf is a Senior Research Fellow at the Monash University Accident Research Centre (MUARC), and Director of the Victorian Injury Surveillance Unit (VISU). Janneke's research interests include injury epidemiology, data linkage, injury outcomes and chronic disease.

Published 22/06/2017.

ACRISP co-hosting the 13th Australasian Injury Prevention and Safety Promotion Conference

The Australian Injury Prevention Network (AIPN), and ACRISP are pleased to be jointly hosting the premier injury prevention conference for Australia and the Asia Pacific, the 13th Australasian Injury Prevention and Safety Promotion Conference. This will be held at The Mercure Hotel and Convention Centre, Ballarat, Victoria, 13 – 15 November 2017.

With a theme of “Take Action”, the Conference will be a multi-disciplinary event featuring representatives from all facets of injury prevention including research, teaching, practice and policy. Themes will be varied and cover topics such as child and family safety, road and transport safety, falls and ageing, water safety (including drowning), burns prevention, injury in a global perspective, rural and remote injury prevention, sports injury prevention and treatment, workplace safety, injury amongst Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and more.

The Conference is expected to attract over 200 delegates from around Australia and the Asia Pacific, including health professionals, researchers, local, state and Australian government officers, students, professionals and practitioners. Delegates will have the opportunity to share knowledge, form or extend networks and explore local attractions.

Please visit the conference website for more information.

Sports injury data keynote address in Korea

Professor Caroline Finch spent the Easter weekend  with research collaborators in Seoul, Korea. She was the international keynote speaker at the Inaugural Annual Yonsei Institute of Sports Science and Exercise Medicine (YISSEM) Symposium on "Evidence-based prevention and protection of athletic health". The topic of her keynote address was "The value of routinely collected injury data for driving sports injury prevention" in which she drew on her extensive sports injury surveillance research history.  Like ACRISP, YISSEM is one of only 9 research centres/institutes worldwide to be recognised by the International Olympic Committee as a Centre for Research Excellence in Injury Prevention and Health Promotion for Athletes.

Published 12/04/2017.

Congratulations Prasanna!

Congratulations to Janka Prasanna Gamage who successfully completed his confirmation of candidature on Thursday 2nd March. Prasanna's PhD thesis is on preventing injuries among junior cricketers in Sri Lanka: Development of injury surveillance system with emphasis on heat related injuries.

Published 19/04/2017.

ACRISP proud to support the IOC World Conference

ACRISP was proud to be a patron of the IOC World Conference on Prevention of Injury & Illness in Sport, which was  held in Monaco from the 16-18 March 2017. The IOC World Conference on Prevention of Injury & Illness in sport was the premier international conference for those interested in clinical aspects of sports and exercise medicine.

Dr Lauren Fortington was one of the many researchers representing ACRISP at the conference. Pictured right captivating her audience with a poster presentation entitled "The Women's Injury Surveillance EXtension for Australian Football".

Published 20/03/2017.

ACRISP receives the Vice-Chancellor's Award for Excellence

The ACRISP team were very proud to receive the Vice-Chancellor's Award for demonstrating excellence in research for 2016. The award caps off a fantastic year of hard work and collaborations for the team.

For more information and a complete list of recipients, visit

Published 16/12/2016.

Congratulations to Siobhán O’Connor on receiving an Australian Government Endeavour Executive Fellowship

We are very excited to announce that Dr Siobhán O’Connor (Dublin City University and Athlone Institute of Technology, Ireland) in conjunction with the ACRISP, has been awarded a prestigious Endeavour Executive Fellowship for 2017. The fellowship will support Siobhán for a research visit to FedUni’s Ballarat campus to undertake a program of research work with Dr Lauren Fortington and Professor Caroline Finch.

Siobhán has a background in athletic therapy and training and her research interests include the epidemiology of sport and recreation injuries in children and adolescents and risk factors for injury. Her PhD was completed at Dublin City University in 2014 on the topic "The pre-participation screening, epidemiology of injuries and the risk factors for injury in school aged and collegiate Gaelic Footballers and Hurlers." Siobhán is the course director of the BSc. in Athletic and Rehabilitation Therapy Ireland and lectures on the BSc. in Sports Science and Exercise Physiology in Athlone Institute of Technology. She is also the Vice President of the professional organisation for Athletic Rehabilitation Therapy Ireland.

We look forward to welcoming Siobhán to Ballarat from September to November, 2017.

Published 25/10/2016.

Sports injury research showcased to the world

Prof Caroline Finch, Dr Lauren Fortington, and Mr Himalaya Singh have recently attended and presented at the Safety2016 Conference in Tampere Finland. Senior Research Fellow, Dr Lauren Fortington presented a poster entitled “Multiple injuries in team ball sports - how are data collected and analysed? A systematic review”. PhD Scholar, Himalaya Singh delivered a talk entitled “Application of spatial epidemiological approaches to injury research: A systematic review” and also presented a poster entitled “Geospatial analysis of sports and leisure injuries in Victoria, Australia”. Professor Caroline Finch delivered a Plenary Address in the closing session of the conference called “Solutions for Active People”. This followed her three previous talks delivered across the program: “The population-level impact of exercise training programs to prevent sports injuries – A controlled ecological evaluation based on reductions in hospital-treated injuries”; Exercise training to prevent sports injuries: results from a clustered randomised controlled trial”; and “Challenges in the implementation of concussion guidelines in community sport”.

Before the main conference, Prof Finch was also a speaker at the International Collaborative Effort on Injury Statistics and Methodology meeting held in Helsinki and talked about “A systems approach towards the development of an injury surveillance and incident reporting system for led outdoor activities”. To wrap up the sequence of meetings, Prof Finch was also an invited speaker at a post-conference sports injury seminar organised by the UKK Institute, a private sports medicine research institute in Helsinki, where she talked about “The value of routine data collected in hospitals for driving sports injury prevention”.

The team have all come back with good feedback on ACRISP research, new research connections and possible collaborators, and ideas for future research.

Supporting our athletes in Rio

ACRISP PhD scholar Mr Prasanna Gamage provided medical support as a volunteer at the Rio 2016 games. Prasanna reported that being in the athletes medical post, and seeing what went on behind the scenes at the Olympics, was an amazing experience.

One highlight was being the sideline doctor on the court for two Australian basketball matches, including the Australia vs. USA match. It was exciting enough watching from far away in Australia, we can't imagine what the atmosphere courtside would have been like..

The whole team together

The ACRISP team came together on August 15th 2016 for a half day seminar showcasing research highlights from the last twelve months. One year on from the first annual retreat,  a number of team members have worked together on new funded projects including an investigation into injury in rugby sevens with the Australian Rugby Union and Australian Institute of Sport, and a study looking at the burden of tendon injuries in professional AFL players.

Three-minute talks were presented by all PhD scholars, staff and associates including: "Racing to the podium with a flat tyre", "Cool new techniques for understanding pain", and "Future directions of prevention research at the Australian Institute of Sport".

The team is now looking forward to ongoing collaborations and meeting together for a breakfast in conjunction with the upcoming Sports Medicine Australia conference, in Melbourne 12-15 October, 2016.

FedUni's Annual Research Conference

Congratulations to ACRISP student Breanne Kunstler on receiving an honorable mention for best oral presentation at Federation University Australia's annual research conference for higher degree students, held at the Mt Helen campus on Thursday 21 July, 2016.

Five of ACRISP's PhD students attended the conference. Sheree Bekker, Nirmala Perera, and Breanne Kunstler all chaired sessions, as well as delivering their own presentations, and Matthew Shumack and Himalaya Singh delivered oral presentations.

Rugby Union injury prevention in Cape Town

Professor Finch was a Visiting Research Fellow at the Department of Exercise Science and Sports Medicine, University of Cape Town for the first two weeks in July. This Fellowship was funded by the South African National Research Foundation, with additional support from South African Rugby Union (SARU) and the Chris Burger/Petro Jackson Players’ Fund. The main purpose of this fellowship was to meet with key rugby union injury prevention researchers and to initiate some joint collaborations.
She participated in staff forums and several PhD student project review sessions in her field of expertise, and delivered three presentations on subsequent injuries, rugby union research, and implementing sports injury prevention.

As the formal guest of SARU, she attended an international rugby union game and a schoolboy rugby match so as to better understand the context for rugby union safety in South Africa. Professor Finch also met with the BokSmart team (pictured).

Congratulations Sally!

Congratulations to Sally Bromley who successfully completed her confirmation of candidature on Thursday 28 April 2016. Sally's PhD thesis is on Olympic combat sports: Injury and illness epidemiology and its link to chances of success and failure.

Prof Caroline Finch recipient of American Public Health Association Lifetime Achievement Award

In 2015, Professor Caroline Finch was the proud recipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Public Health Association (APHA) in the Injury Control and Emergency Health Services (ICEHS) Section. During her trip to the US to receive the award, she was able to visit with many leading injury prevention researchers, including Professor Steve Marshall from the Centre for Disease Control, and Associate Professor Dawn Comstock from the Colorado School of Public Health (pictured). She also delivered talks and visited with researchers at Columbia University in New York, and the Johns Hopkins Center for Injury Research and Policy in Baltimore.

Best student presentation at the 12th Australasian Injury Prevention and Safety Promotion Conference

Congratulations go to ACRISP PhD student Sheree Bekker for receiving the best student presentation at the 12th Australasian Injury Prevention and Safety Promotion Conference (AIPN) which was held in Sydney from 25-27 November, 2015. Well done!

ACRISP a powerhouse at the 12th Australasian Injury Prevention and Safety Promotion Conference

The ACRISP team went from strength to strength at the AIPN conference held in Sydney from 25-27 November, 2015. Professor Caroline Finch began by delivering a keynote address, and the team followed up with presentations throughout the day in the ACRISP sponsored Sports Injury Prevention stream. Sheree Bekker brought it home when she was awarded the best student presentation of the conference.

Pictured from left: Dr Damian Morgan, Himalaya Singh, Shannon Gray, Prof Caroline Finch, Sheree Bekker, Dr Lauren Fortington, Dr Scott Talpey

ACRISP researchers investigate injury in rugby sevens

ACRISP researchers were featured in The Ballarat Courier for their work investigating injury in the new Olympic sport, rugby sevens.

Click here for the full article.

Prof Caroline Finch interviewed in International Innovation publication

Prof Finch discusses her recent prestigious award from the American Public Health Association, her current research focus and her career highlights in this excellent and informative article. To read the full article, see

ACRISP one of nine centres worldwide recognised as IOC Research Centres

ACRISP has been announced as one of only nine centres worldwide to be recognised as International Olympic Committee (IOC) Research Centres for Prevention of Injury and Protection of Athlete Health. Find out more details here