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Work Relating to Brain Injuries in Sport Focus of Online Open Event

The dangers of brain injury in sport and how it affects people is the focus of an open event to be staged by the University of Winchester’s Sport and Exercise Research Centre (SERC).

‘Concussion in Sport: Supporting Athletes, Carers, and Researchers’ is an on-line event taking place on November 22 from midday to 1.30pm.

Five short presentations will showcase current and planned research in the field of brain injury in sport including work on Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE) – a type of dementia found in sports people.

CTE is usually caused by repeated blows to the head and people involved in contact sports like boxing, rugby, football, American football and martial arts are at the most risk.

A study published in the scientific journal Acta Neuropathologica on the eve of the recent Rugby World Cup found CTE present in 21 of the 31 brains (68 per cent) of former players donated to research institutes in the USA, UK and Australia.

The SERC event will hear from:

· Georgia Young on her PhD work around understanding the experiences of CTE caregivers

· Dr Jo Batey on researcher vulnerability when working in this sensitive area

· Dr Matt Smith on an intervention study that explored family members (of athletes with CTE) writing reflective letters to their former selves

· Dr John Batten on research into caregiver burden, mental health, well-being, and sleep quality

· Dr Christoph Szedlak on research into players’ experiences of persistent post-concussion syndrome

“Through these presentations, we consider how best individuals can be supported when athletes have experienced brain injuries in sport, and how these research findings can underpin intervention work to support these individuals,” said Matt Smth, who leads this strand of research at SERC.



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