Biopsychosocial Understanding of Sport Injury

Arvinen-Barrow, Monna; Walker, Natalie C. and Heaney, Caroline (2024). Biopsychosocial Understanding of Sport Injury. In: Arvinen-Barrow, Monna and Clement, Damien eds. The Psychology of Sport Injury and Rehabilitation. Routledge, pp. 27–45.



Experiencing a sport injury has biological, psychological, and social consequences to the athlete and the various sociocultural systems in which they operate. Understanding how these consequences interact is imperative to various sport psychology, sports medicine, and sport professionals as they can impact athletes’ reactions to the injury, rehabilitation, and subsequent return to participation and/or transition out of sport. This chapter aims to provide an overview of biopsychosocial responses to sport injury. The chapter outlines existing theoretical models explaining biopsychosocial responses to sport injury, summarizes the most common psychosocial responses to sport injury, and explains how psychological and social factors can influence sport injury experience and recovery outcomes.

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