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Research & Investigations in Sports Medicine

Perceived and Actual Knowledge of Cupping Therapy Concepts among Athletic Trainers in the State of Texas

Submission: May 08, 2020;Published: June 30, 2020

DOI: 10.31031/RISM.2020.06.000644

ISSN: 2577-1914
Volume6 Issue4


Recent studies have suggested a gap between perceived and actual knowledge of cupping therapy among athletic trainers. However, the authors of these studies have noted that further investigation into athletic training populations is needed to determine the full extent of this knowledge gap. Given that the majority of athletic trainers use cupping therapy to some degree in their clinical practice; this knowledge gap warrants further investigation. Thus, the purpose of this study was to determine the perceived and actual knowledge of cupping therapy among athletic trainers in the state of Texas. A total of 79 athletic trainers participated in this study (age= 34 ± 12 years, certified experience = 11 ± 11 years). Participants were sent an electronic survey by email that assessed frequency of usage, perceived knowledge, and actual knowledge of cupping therapy. Measures of central tendency (means, standard deviations, frequencies) were calculated for all survey items. Data was downloaded and analyzed using a commercially available statistics package (SPSS Version 26, IBM, Armonk, NY). A Pearson correlation was calculated for the perceived knowledge mean score and the actual knowledge total score to identify a knowledge gap between what participants believed they knew and what they actually knew. Lastly, an independent samples t-test was performed to assess the relationship difference in actual knowledge between those who had received education in cupping therapy and those who had not. The majority of athletic trainers agreed that cupping therapy was a necessary skill for their clinical practice. The majority of participants also reported using cupping therapy at least once during a typical week of clinical practice. Regarding perceived knowledge, the majority of participants were in the mid-range of agreement/disagreement, indicating at least some uncertainty about their knowledge of cupping therapy. Average scores on actual knowledge were 9.07 ± 3.05. A positive relationship was found between perceived knowledge and actual knowledge of cupping therapy (r = 0.912, P <0.001). Additionally, athletic trainers who had received some form of education in cupping therapy displayed significantly higher actual knowledge than those who had not received education (p = 0.003).As with previous studies, the majority of athletic trainers surveyed felt that cupping therapy was a necessary skill for their clinical practice. This continuously demonstrated knowledge gap between perceived and actual knowledge of cupping therapy suggests the need for future research on education regarding cupping therapy.

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