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Profile of injuries among sitting volleyball players with disabilities in Rwanda

Assuman Nuhu
Ben Honoré Nishimwe
Jean Bosco Nteziryayo
Aimée Flora Nyirahabimana
Jackline Starehe
Anne Kumurenzi
Jean Baptiste Sagahutu


Background: Sports injuries are some of the risk of paralympics sport. Injuries are somewhat high compared with injury rates in able-bodied athletes. Injuries might have an impact on the participation and future health. It is paramount to investigate sports specific injuries to eliminate associated risks.

Aim: To identify patterns of injuries among sitting volleyball players in Rwanda.

Methods: A prospective quantitative study was conducted among 158 sitting volleyball players competing in the 2013-2014 season. The research team composed by physiotherapists used the data collection process following the consensus on injury definitions and data collection procedures. The ethical clearance and permission were obtained from relevant bodies. ANOVA or the Mann–Whitney U-test were used for continuous variables while Chi-square or Fisher’s exact tests were used for categorical variables.

Results: All the 158 players aged 25±6 years participated in the study; with male predominance (66.5%). Fifty-eight players (37%) sustained at least one injury. Nearly half of injuries (n=43) were mild, consistent for both male and female. There was no statistical difference in the patterns of injuries comparing male and female participants.

Conclusion: Sitting volleyball players with disability in Rwanda sustained a high prevalence of injuries. The fingers, hands and wrists were the most injured body parts. However, the health and integrative advantages should outweigh the risk of adverse effects associated with participation in sports such as injuries.

Keywords: Sitting volleyball, People with disabilities (PWDs), Injury