It is a known fact that athletes become susceptible to injuries with more athletic injury exposures, and that pain is the most common symptom paired with injury. Pain catastrophizing is a phenomenon that is caused by negative thinking that has been shown to reduce treatment outcomes in patient populations. Pain catastrophizing has been studied in different populations, usually with specific body part injuries, showing it is a relevant factor in the outcome of rehabilitation. Nobody has researched the prevalence of pain catastrophizing in highly athletic populations. In Division I athletes at Eastern Kentucky University, 291 athletes were surveyed using the Pain Catastrophizing Scale (PCS). It was found that 14% of the athletes surveyed were classified as pain catastrophizers. Athletes were also given a demographic patient identifier sheet which indicated that athletes with a current injury, previous injury, or playing with pain were at a higher risk of being a pain catastrophizer. Also, athletes with a previous injury were 3.4x more likely to be a pain catastrophizer. This can be useful when clinically rehabilitating athletes that score highly on the PCS.

Semester/Year of Award

Fall 12-11-2017


Aaron D. Sciascia

Department/Professional Affiliation

Exercise and Sport Science

Access Options

Open Access Thesis

Document Type

Bachelor Thesis

Degree Name

Honors Scholars

Degree Level



Exercise and Sport Science