Date of Award

Spring 4-21-2023

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Medical Science (MMSc)

First Advisor

Samantha Smith, MD


Rugby is growing rapidly in the United States as an alternative to American football. Like football, rugby is a contact and tackle sport that carries a high risk for concussions. Football players who transition to rugby may bring tackling techniques that further increase their concussion risk. The possible role of American football experience enhancing the risk of concussions in American rugby players has not been explored. In this study, we seek to identify whether collegiate rugby players with experience playing American football are at greater risk of sustaining concussions than rugby players without prior American football experience. We intend to conduct a prospective cohort study using accelerometers to measure and compare impacts between football players, football-to-rugby players, and rugby-only players. These insights can inform a more nuanced understanding of the risk of concussions in rugby and enhance efforts to coach tackling techniques and improve player safety.