Every sportsperson at every level should be able to participate in activity in a safe environment with the reassurance that their medical interests have not been overlooked. The FA Medical Department strongly recommends that whenever sports activity is taking place, a first aider who has completed an appropriate first aid course is in attendance. The FA Basic First Aid for Sport course is a foundation sports first aid course aimed at ‘lay first aiders’, specifically coaches, teachers, parents and volunteers, who are responsible for the provision of first aid when supporting sports activities.

Course Organisation

The organisation of The FA Basic First Aid for Sport course will proceed through FA Learning and in conjunction with The FA Medical Department. Sports First Aid Courses can be organised for both the Professional and National Game, through FA County Football Associations, Colleges of Further Education, Local Authorities, or other independent ‘approved’ centres. The content is not solely specific to football, and other sporting organisations may also be eligible to organise and undertake courses.

Course Aims:
  • To provide the student with an understanding of the general duties, responsibilities and treatment principles of first aid
  • To provide students with the basic knowledge, skills and attitude necessary to recognise and differentiate major from minor injury and the ability to offer basic first aid and injury/illness management and advice to a participant who has sustained illness/injury when engaged in sports activity, or in a sports environment
Course Objectives:

Upon completion of our sports first aid courses, the student should be able to:

  • Describe the duties, responsibilities, general treatment principles and priorities of emergency care provision
  • Describe the elements of pre-event preparation in relation to emergency care provision
  • Demonstrate an understanding of basic anatomy and physiology in relation to first aid
  • Conduct the logical ‘on-field’ assessment (SALTAPS) of a participant and apply principles of infection control
  • Recognise and respond to the signs and symptoms of common injuries
  • Recognise and respond to the signs and symptoms of common illnesses
Course Limits of Responsibility:

The course aims and objectives focus on the need to provide the student with sufficient knowledge and skills to identify illness, injuries and conditions and apply the appropriate first aid management. The aims and objectives are also directed towards a student identifying the need for an injured or ill casualty to be referred to a hospital, clinic or unit, for medical management by an appropriate healthcare professional.

Course Duration

Our sports first aid courses are 9 hours in duration. The suggested format is in 3 x 3 hour modules undertaken over a 3 week period. A flexible approach is acceptable providing the entire course content is covered.

Course Content

The course has been subdivided into three distinct modules:

Module 1 – general principles of first aid and emergency aid:
  • Pre-activity preparation
  • The emergency action plan
  • Reacting to an incident / approaching the injured player
  • The ‘primary survey’ and ‘secondary survey’
  • The recovery position
  • CPR
  • Choking
  • Severe external / internal bleeding
  • Shock
Module 2 – common musculo-skeletal injuries, ‘on-field’ assessment, and basic first aid management of acute soft tissue injury:
  • Basic injury recognition
  • Fractures / dislocations
  • Ligament injury – ‘sprains’
  • Muscle injury – ‘strains’ and ‘contusions’
  • The ‘on-field’ injury assessment process - SALTAPS
  • Basic first aid management of acute soft tissue injury
  • Head / spinal injury
  • Skull / cheekbone / nose / jaw / rib fracture
Module 3 – common medical conditions, the first aid kit, and after incident issues:
  • Anaphylaxis
  • Asthma
  • Seizure
  • Diabetes
  • Hypothermia
  • Hyperthermia – heat Stroke / heat exhaustion
  • Cramp
  • Dehydration
  • Foreign body in the eye
  • First aid kit contents
  • After an emergency incident
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