SCRUm Cohort Study

Training load and injury risk in Leinster Schoolboys’ Rugby: the SCRUm cohort study Phase 2 (2022-2023)

The first phase of the SCRUm study was undertaken during the 2019/20 schoolboys rugby season. A total of 16 schools from the Senior and Vinnie Murray Cup competitions were recruited and collected training load and injury data. It was found that 84 injuries were reported over a 20-week period, with injuries occurring more frequently during matches (n=61, 73%) compared to during training (n=21, 27%). Further results will be published to peer reviewed journals in the coming months.

The research team proposed further surveillance of schoolboy rugby players which was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The SCRUm study Phase 2 aims to continue injury surveillance during the Leinster Rugby Senior schoolboy competitions.

Training load monitoring will be available to 12 schools during the 2022-23 season. The collection of injury and training load data will allow investigation into potential risk factors for injury, and comparison to data collected during the 2019-20 season.

Research team

  • Principal investigators: Louise Keating and Dr Helen French
  • Co-investigators:
    • Sarah Murphy, Researcher, RCSI
    • Mr Cliff Beirne, Consultant Maxillofacial Surgeon, Sports Surgery Clinic Santry
    • Prof. John Quinlan, Consultant Trauma and Orthopaedic Surgeon, Tallaght University Hospital
    • Prof. Ronan Conroy, Professor Emeritus, Epidemiology & Public Health Medicine, RCSI
    • Dr Chris Bleakley, Senior Lecturer, School of Health Sciences, Ulster University
    • Brian Doyle, Research Assistant, RCSI

How will the study be carried out?

Teams eligible to play in the Leinster Schools Senior and Vinnie Murray Cup competitions are recruited to participate in the SCRUm study during the 2022-2023 rugby season. All eligible schools are invited to participate in injury surveillance, where a nominated injury data collector will record injuries sustained by players. A total of 12 schools may ‘opt-in’ to access the athlete monitoring system which allows players to record individual training load data throughout the season.

Taking part in the study

If you are eligible you will have received an email from your school coach with information about the study or attended our roadshow information session at your school. Once you have reviewed our information leaflet and you decide to be involved, you will need to formally consent to participate in the study. If you have any questions before you consent, you can email

Players 18 years or over Players under 18 years
You must provide consent via AdobeSign 
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Further details and training on use of injury surveillance and athlete monitoring systems will be provided at your school by the research team.

  • Grant funding: This study is funded by the IRFU Charitable Trust (IRFUCT).
  • Ethical approval: Ethics approval for this project has been received from the RCSI Research Ethics Committee (REC 1608). Additionally, permission has been given for the study by the Leinster Rugby Schools Committee.

Supported by the IRFU Charitable Trust and Leinster Rugby Schools committee

Contact us

SCRUm Study Phase 2 – Player Information Booklet PDF | 740.1 KB SCRUm Study Phase 2 – Guardian Information Booklet PDF | 720 KB