View all news

Surfers needed for national survey on injury rates


Brigid Veale
13 October 2010
Surfing is one of Australia’s greatest pastimes, but those lucky enough to participate in this sport know there are possible hazards.

Southern Cross University is undertaking a study to investigate the prevalence of injuries in Australian surfers.

The research is being conducted in conjunction with Surfing Australia and with funding received from the New South Wales (NSW) Sporting Injuries Committee. The research team is led by Dr Rudi Meir and involves other staff from the University’s School of Health and Human Sciences.

“Surfing is an iconic Australian sport and yet very little research has been conducted into it as a pastime. This project will examine one aspect of participation in the form of injury prevalence and we certainly hope to ultimately conduct more research in this sport,” Dr Meir said.

As part of the study, surfers are being invited to participate in an online survey which will provide valuable information on injury rates, types and severity of injury, skin cancer and general surf safety.

Sport development manager for Surfing Australia, Chris Symington said surfing was a great sport and enormously popular, with some 2.5 million participants here in Australia and many more millions from around the world.

“Surfing Australia is hoping that this project will be the first of many that will shed more light on the sport and its participants,” Mr Symington said.

“Ultimately it may well allow bodies such as Surfing Australia and the NSW Sport Injuries Committee to develop policies and guidelines that can work to further enhance the experience of surfers.”

The survey is available via the link below. Anyone who would like to participate should read the ‘Welcome’ page first, which outlines the nature of the research and participation in the survey.

Participation is completely anonymous and the project has been approved by the Southern Cross University Human Research Ethics Committee. This survey will only be available to access for approximately four weeks and will be removed from the website on November 7.

Photo: Surfing is a popular sport with around 2.5 million participants in Australia. Photo credit Steve Robertson – Surfing Australia.