THE EFFECT OF PLAYING SURFACE ON ANKLE RANGE OF MOTION OVER SIX WEEKS
Cardiff Metropolitan University
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Main Aim: To investigate the influence of playing surfaces on ankle range of motion. It was hypothesised that there would be no significant interaction between the playing surface and ankle range of motion over six weeks. Method: Ankle dorsiflexion was the main variable of interest in the current study. Male amateur Football players (n= 14; Aged 22.7 (±3.3) years) underwent a weight bearing lunge test before and after exposure to a grass and artificial surface over six weeks. Results: Analysis of the pre and post measures of ankle dorsiflexion revealed a significant difference (p= .018) for the right ankle and a non significant difference (p=.087) for the left ankle on artificial turf. For a grass surface, significant differences were seen for left and right ankles (p= 006; .001). No significant interaction was seen for surface x time for either ankle (p= .584; p= .286). Conclusions: Artificial turf was seen to be a true alternative to grass in the current study, and the initial hypothesis was accepted. However, the findings can only be generalised to a homogenous sample in terms of age, sport and level of competition. It would not be realistic to assume one sole risk factor, but to account for numerous factors. The need for additional research is clear, as a wide range of contributing factors can influence the player - surface interaction.
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