Sports Medicine

AFC Sports Physiotherapy Course concludes

Doha: Aspetar – the orthopaedic and sports medicine hospital – together with the Asian Football Confederation (AFC), successfully organised the 2nd AFC Sports Physiotherapy Course 2018, which took place from March 4-6. 

Building on the success of the 1st AFC Sports Physiotherapy Course which took place in 2016, the three-day course brought professionals and practitioners from around the world to Qatar for a unique and informative event.

The biennial course is designed to help physiotherapists manage the challenges and complexities of the ever-changing modern game of football.

This year’s event examined the role of physiotherapists and their contribution to supporting footballers’ recovery and rehabilitation, enabling them to achieve optimal performances.

Across a variety of workshop sessions, presentations and practical exercises, the course provided participants with the opportunity to examine best practices in physiotherapy and to develop their knowledge and understanding through practical workshops, evidence-based examples and extensive clinical research.

Course sessions focused particularly on team sports and covered topics such as the growing role of physiotherapists in football, clinical reasoning principles adopted by physiotherapists, groin injury prevention methods, Pre-Competition Medical Assessment (PCMA) screening, the use of Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) portable devices to treat sudden cardiac arrest (SCA), hamstring injuries, knee and ankle injuries, acute musculoskeletal trauma, concussions and other medical emergencies such as asthma attacks, epilepsy and heart related illnesses.

Experts also discussed anti-doping among athletes, the ethical boundaries in athletes’ use of supplements to help with recovery, and psychological factors that affect the progress of athletes’ recovery following injury.

The course was held in preparation for next year’s 6th AFC Medical Conference that will take place from March 4-9, 2019 in Chengdu, China – an event that Aspetar experts will also participate in.

The AFC Medical Conference held every four years is considered one of the world’s leading medical and scientific conferences, attracting hundreds of participants from different sports federations and sports medicine institutions from around the world every year.

"The course is very informative especially the theory as well as the practical applications. It gave us a good opportunity to learn. We will try to apply the valuable principles, evidence-based practices and researches learned during the three-day course to our federation and teams and also share with the clubs, coaches and players for the benefit of game in general. The role of the team physiotherapist is to always put the safety of the players first, hence it is imperative if we can apply the knowledge gained from the course in order to speed up the recovery process and limit their injury rate." said Rony Fares, a physiotherapist from Lebanon.

Physiotherapist Matias Ibo from Indonesia also echoed Fares' sentiment and added: "The knowledge gained from this course will be shared with the physiotherapists, nutritionists, coaches and sports physician and we will work together especially with the new evidence-based research regarding injuries on how to prevent and minimize injuries as well as
new approach to training."

As the first FIFA Medical Centre of Excellence accredited in the Middle East, and among the first centres worldwide, Aspetar’s partnership with the AFC has enabled major advances in the care of the Asian footballers. This includes the development of football medicine on the continent, applied research and the education of players – from grassroots to international elite level.

The course builds on Aspetar’s existing partnership with the AFC, evident in several projects including the launch of the AFC/Aspetar Injury and Illness Surveillance Study in 2017. This important partnership brings Aspetar closer to achieving its vision to be a global leader in sports medicine and exercise science by 2020.