Table 2

Examples of handball-specific injury prevention exercises (n=26) including physical principles and integrated psychological aspects developed by research team based on the results from expert consensus and subsequent discussion with key stakeholders, and feedback from coaches (n=7) and players (n=15) from workshops

Main body part (exercises, n)Example of exercisesIncluded physical principlesIntegrated psychological aspectsFeedback from coaches and players
Exercises integrated within warm-upCoaches
Positive feedback
  • exercises generally practicable, relevant, and meaningful**

  • high activity in group exercise**

Feedback for improvement
  • clear instructions re. Why (purpose and relevance to handball) and how§

  • instructions re. correct and incorrect movement technique§

  • instructions re. feedback§

  • video of exercises§

  • age-related (eg, smaller balls in grip exercises)§

  • progression of difficulty§

  • exercises in digital platform§

  • programme with selected exercises rather than choosing from a bank of exercises§

Positive feedback
  • exercises fun, relevant, handball-specific, new and varying**

  • clear instructions re. why and how**

  • pairwise and group exercises fun‡

  • individual feedback important§

Feedback for improvement
  • avoid too many new exercises at the same time§

Lower extremities (n=3)Run with foot plant*; Forward lunge then lift back leg (as if to jump)†; Double-leg squats with partner in plank positionHip-knee-foot alignment, soft and controlled landings, leg muscle strengthPairwise‡, peer-feedback§ mindful muscle activation¶
Upper extremities (n=6)Shoulder external rotation*; Drop and catch ball*††; Shoulder press*Muscle strength posterior part of shoulder, gripPairwise‡, peer-feedback§, mindful muscle activation¶
Core (n=4)Plank with arm wrestling and ball; Single-leg balance with ball; Slow-motion rotations–man-to-man†Muscle strength core, shoulders, legs, and gripPairwise‡, competition‡, mindful muscle activation¶
Exercises integrated within handball skills training
Lower extremities (n=6)Jumping and cutting exercises with catch and throwLanding on both feet, hip-knee-foot alignment, soft and controlled landings, narrow cutting technique, leg muscle strengthPairwise‡, peer-feedback§, competition†
Upper extremities (n=3)Backwards throw*; Throw behind back; Overhead-throwMuscle strength posterior part of shoulder, wristPairwise‡, peer-feedback§
Core (n=2)Core side to side with catch and throw; Core sit-up with catch and throwCore muscle strength, wristPairwise‡, peer-feedback§
Integrated strength (n=2)Strength exercises coupled with specific handball skills practice, that is, shoulder – throwing; core—defence; jumping and landing—feint and cutting movementsMuscle strength core, shoulders and legsGroup exercise, players choose exercises from circuit program**
  • Balance, coordination, posture and flexibility included in most exercises and are not specifically detailed in physical principles

  • *Exercises from Fit to play (

  • †n=1 coach reported as difficult to put into practice for younger players

  • ‡Relatedness (ie, aspect aligned with self-determination theory).

  • §Perceived competence (ie, aspect aligned with self-determination theory).

  • ¶Task focus and body awareness.

  • **Autonomy (ie, aspect aligned with self-determination theory).

  • ††n=3 coaches reported not relevant for younger players (gripping the ball difficult).