Delivering sport science and sport medicine services to regional, rural and remote athletes in New South Wales

Annis-Brown, Peter and Ansell, Warren and Christensen, Steven A. ORCID: and Woodward, Gillian (2007) Delivering sport science and sport medicine services to regional, rural and remote athletes in New South Wales. In: 2007 New South Wales Conference of Science and Medicine in Sport, 5 May 2007, Sydney, Australia.

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This paper presents a case study that describes how the Northern Inland Academy of Sport (NIAS) has provided sport physiotherapy, sport psychology, and sport nutrition to young athletes living throughout the vast north-west region of New South Wales (NSW). NIAS is a NSW regional academy that commenced in November 1992. Each year, it offers 150-180 scholarships to talented adolescent athletes aged between 14-18 years of age. These 12-month scholarships provide these country athletes with specialist sport skills training; introductory sport science, sport medicine and sport media training; specialist physiological testing; and sport competition including participation in the multi-sport Inter-Academy Games. But how do you provide sport science and sport medicine services to 150-180 adolescent athletes spread across over 98,000 km2 of north-west NSW? Prior to 2003, NIAS approached this in an orthodox manner and used a centralised sport-specific program. This situated sport science and sport medicine training within weekend training camps that NIAS sports squads held three times each year. This approach was based on recommendations from the Australian and international sports literature and the NSW Institute of Sport (NSWIS) service delivery-model for Tier-3 squad sports. This approach focused on cost-efficiency and provided adequate results. But we were dissatisfied with how it serviced country athletes. In response we developed a new program called Regional Athlete Coach Education (RACE) in 2003. RACE is unique because it privileges the efficacy of servicing country athlete and their families above the costs involved in delivering such a program. RACE regionalises sport science and sport medicine training via professionals travelling to country towns and giving hands-on, mid-week, evening presentation to NIAS athletes and their families, friends, coaches and teachers. RACE is unique as it is about decentralising services, and was developed for features that are characteristic of the New England and North West Region of NSW. The practical implication of this paper is that providing country athletes with sport science and sport medicine services does not need to be expensive, but it needs to be innovative. The professional implication is that servicing regional, rural, and remote athletes involves more than service delivery innovation, such as in just travelling to country towns. It also requires conceptual innovation and technical innovation of sport science and sport medicine knowledge and skills so to match with the life-issues and generational issues of adolescent athletes living in regional, rural, and remote Australia.

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Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Commonwealth Reporting Category E) (Paper)
Refereed: No
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: No evidence of copyright restrictions on web site.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Sciences - Department of Psychology (Up to 30 Jun 2013)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Sciences - Department of Psychology (Up to 30 Jun 2013)
Date Deposited: 11 Oct 2007 01:08
Last Modified: 05 Aug 2013 06:26
Uncontrolled Keywords: Australian athletes; sports medicine; physiotherapy; regional; rural; remote; New South wales
Fields of Research (2008): 17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences > 1701 Psychology > 170114 Sport and Exercise Psychology
16 Studies in Human Society > 1604 Human Geography > 160402 Recreation, Leisure and Tourism Geography
11 Medical and Health Sciences > 1106 Human Movement and Sports Science > 110604 Sports Medicine
Fields of Research (2020): 52 PSYCHOLOGY > 5201 Applied and developmental psychology > 520107 Sport and exercise psychology
44 HUMAN SOCIETY > 4406 Human geography > 440608 Recreation, leisure and tourism geography
32 BIOMEDICAL AND CLINICAL SCIENCES > 3202 Clinical sciences > 320225 Sports medicine
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): C Society > 93 Education and Training > 9399 Other Education and Training > 939903 Equity and Access to Education

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