Understanding safety management system applicability in community sport

Alexander Donaldson, David Borys, Caroline Frances Finch

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

    16 Citations (Scopus)


    Despite recent interest in understanding the implementation context for sports injury prevention interventions, little research attention has been paid to the management structures and processes of community sporting organisations. This study developed expert consensus about the importance of Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) setting-related safety management system (SMS) principles and performance indicators in the context of Australian community sporting organizations, and the feasibility of these organisations meeting the requirements for the SMS performance indicators. Twenty-nine sports injury prevention, community sports administration and OHS SMS experts participated in a three-round online Delphi study by rating the importance of 64 SMS performance indicators categorised under the five principles of Commitment and Policy; Planning; Implementation; Measurement and Evaluation; and Review and Improvement. Overall, consensus agreement - define as rated essential or very important on a five-point scale by =75 of the participants in Round 3 - was reached for 57 performance indicators. Ten (15 ) performance indicators were rated as very difficult or relatively difficult , and six (9 ) were rated as very easy or relatively easy on a four-point scale, by =75 of participants. This research suggests that the guiding principles and associated performance indicators that underpin OHS safety management systems in the workplace are very relevant and applicable to community sporting organisations in Australia. However, considerable work is required to build organisational capacity to be able to develop and implement meaningfully and useful SMSs to prevent sports injuries in the most common setting in which they occur.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)95 - 104
    Number of pages10
    JournalSafety Science
    Publication statusPublished - 2013

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