“I was able to do my job on the field and keep playing:” A case study investigating female and male athletes’ experiences with (not)reporting concussions.

James Sanderson, Melinda Weathers, Katherine Snedaker, Kelly Gramlich

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


This research applied muted group theory to investigate female and male athletes’ experiences with not reporting concussions sustained during athletic competition. Using snowball-sampling techniques, a total of 365 women and 247 men completed an online open-ended questionnaire about their reasons for not reporting a concussion. Results indicated that male athletes were more likely to continue to play through and not report a concussion than female athletes. Participants also indicated that they did not report concussions due to (a) perceived lack of resources, (b) perceived lack of severity, (c) conformance to sport cultural norms, which was comprised of two subthemes: adherence to the pain principle and team allegiance. The results suggest that efforts to address concussion management in sport need to focus on the communicative and structural elements that privilege hegemonic masculinity and playing through pain, as they contribute to muting athletes in advocating for their health.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)267-287
JournalCommunication and Sport
StatePublished - 2017


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