U.S. Sports Academy
Authors: Christianne M Eason, Alexandrya H Cairns, and Stephanie M. Singe
Department of Kinesiology, University of Connecticut, CT, USA
Christianne M Eason, PhD, ATC
President of Sport Safety
Department of Kinesiology, University of Connecticut
2095 Hillside Road U-1110, Storrs, CT 06269
Christianne M. Eason is the President of Sport Safety at the Korey Stringer Institute which is housed in the Department of Kinesiology at the University of Connecticut. Her research interests include the work-life interface of athletic trainers, specifically organizational factors and sports safety advocacy.
Alexandrva H Cairns is a second year PhD student in the Department of Kinesiology at the University of Connecticut. Her research interests include work-life balance among athletic trainers, and more specifically perceptions of patient care and clinician well-being.
Stephanie M. Singe is an associate professor in the Department of Kinesiology. Her research focus is on work-life balance and other factors that influence the job satisfaction and quality of life of an athletic trainer. She is lead author of the position statement on Facilitating Work-Life Balance in Athletic Training Practice Settings.
The Impact of the Number of Student Athletes on Burnout and Work-Family Conflict of High School Athletic Trainers
Context: The relationship between clinician’s perceptions of patient care and burnout and work-family conflict (WFC) has not been examined as closely. In the high school setting, where athletic trainers often work as the only clinician and/or have a high volume of patients it is important to determine if experiences of burnout and WFC impacts perceptions of patient care.
Objective: Determine if any relationship exists between burnout and WFC and athletic trainer’s perceptions of patient care.
Design: Cross-sectional study
Setting: Online web-based survey
Patients or Other Participants: Athletic trainers were emailed through the Athletic Training Location and Services (ATLAS) database and invited to participate. Data from 573 (n = 373 (65.1%) women, n = 195 (34.2%) men, n = 1 (0.2%) transgender woman, n = 1 (0.02%) not listed, and n = 2 (0.3%) Prefer Not to Answer) were included in data analysis.
Main Outcome Measure(s): Data analyzed for this study included basic demographic information, the Copenhagen Burnout Inventory, a Work-Family Conflict Scale, and 5 questions specific to patient care (open-ended and ranking).
Results: Overall, participants reported low levels of burnout and WFC. The majority (55.7%) were satisfied with the time they had to deliver patient care and (65.7%) the care they were able to deliver. Stress was most often selected as a factor that negatively impacted patient care, while exercise was most commonly selected as the factor that positively impacted patient care. Participants who were satisfied with patient-care had lower strain-based conflict (U = 32441.0, p = .030) and participants who were satisfied with time for patient care had lower total WFC (U = 29174.5, p < .001).
Conclusions: Student athlete number and interactions do not appear to be a source of burnout or WFC among high school athletic trainers. Work-related factors and personal well-being and mental-health appear to impact clinicians’ perceptions of care delivered to patients.