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

Sports injury epidemiology

Led by Prof Caroline Finch and Dr Lauren Fortington

The ACRISP epidemiology team are data driven researchers who use epidemiological and biostatistical methods for investigation of population health issues relating to injury. We conduct research that seeks to understand the types of injuries that occur in active populations, to whom they occur and how they occur. This understanding of injury rates and injury risks provides the basis for prioritisation of prevention measures and public health understanding of the burden of injury. We collaborate with researchers in Australia and worldwide, as well as sporting bodies and public health agents.

Recent publications for sports injury epidemiology include:

Finch CF, Cook J, Akram M, Kunstler B, Orchard J. Subsequent injuries – more common than just injury recurrences. An analysis of prospectively collected injuries in professional Australian Football. American Journal of Sports Medicine. 2017. In press. [Published online first 09-03/2017 as doi:10.1177/036354651691943].

Fortington LV, Kucera K, Finch CF. Capturing sport-related fatalities in consensus statements for sports injury/illness surveillance. British Journal of Sports Medicine. 2017. In press. [Published online first 30/01/2017 as doi:10.1136/bjsports-2017-097488].

Fortington LV, van der Worp H, van den Akker-Scheek I, Finch CF. Reporting multiple individual injuries in studies of team ball sports: a systematic review of current practice. Sports Medicine. 2016. [Published online first 26/10/2016 as doi:10.1007/s40279-016-0637-3].

Hulme A, Nielsen OR, Timpka T, Verhagen E, Finch CF. Risk and protective factors for middle- and long-distance running related injury. Sports Medicine. In press. [Published first online 27/10/2016 as doi:10.1007/s40279-016-0636-4].

Hulme A, Salmon MP, Nielsen RO, Read G, Finch CF. Closing Pandora’s box: Adapting a systems ergonomics methodology for better understanding the ecological complexity underpinning the development and prevention of running-related injury. Theoretical Issues in Ergonomics Science. 2017. In press. [Published online first 06/03/2017 as doi:10.1080/1463922X.2016.1274455].

Shaw L, Orchard J, Saw R, Finch CF. Injury surveillance in the professional football codes: an overview of current data collection, injury definition and reporting practices. Minerva Ortopedica E Traumatologica. 2017. In press.

Singh H, Fortington LV, Thompson H, Finch CF. An overview of geospatial methods used in unintentional epidemiology. Injury Epidemiology. 2016;3:32. [Published online first 26/12/2016 as doi:10.1186/s40621-016-0097-0].

Examples of our projects are listed below, with links to further information provided.

Preventing Australian Football Injuries through Exercise (PAFIX)

The Preventing Australian Football Injuries through eXercise (PAFIX) project was a large scale study designed to understand and prevent knee injuries in community Australian football. The PAFIX study involved following 18 community-level Australian football clubs in Western Australia and Victoria through an entire season. PAFIX included highly detailed epidemiological components for injury surveillance and monitoring of training/game exposures.

More information is available at


The FootyWISE project was undertaken in 2014 in partnership with the Australian Football League (AFL). The project aimed to gain a first ever understanding of injuries in women who play Australian football to inform future injury surveillance efforts and targeted training/coaching needs.

The UPLOADS project

The UPLOADS Project (Understanding and preventing injury in the led outdoor activity domain) is a theory driven approach to injury surveillance and prevention. Prof Caroline Finch is a Chief Investigator on this ARC Linkage Project. The aim of the project is to develop trial and validate an incident reporting and learning system for the Australian led outdoor activity industry. The project is led by A/Prof Paul Salmon from the University of the Sunshine Coast (USC), and includes research partners from USC, Monash University and Federation University Australia. Industry partners are the Australian Camps Association, Department of Planning and Community Development Victoria, Outdoor Council of Australia, Outdoor Education Australia, The Outdoor Education group, Victorian Outdoor Education Association, and YMCA Victoria.