To what extent do different netball movement patterns influence foot landing technique and predispose athletes to the risk of ACL injury
Holland, Emily Paige
Cardiff Metropolitan University
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The aim of this study was to develop an understanding on whether different netball movement patterns influenced foot landing technique that may contribute to a valgus rotation at the knee joint, predisposing the risk of non- contact ACL tear. The overall purpose was to further rationalise ACL pathologies for screening protocols and to inform injury prevention strategies. Nine female (mean ± SD age: 20 ± 0.93 years, height 1.66 ± 0.07 m, body mass 67 ± 9.21 kg) university netball players volunteered to participate in a series of movement patterns that included cutting, abrupt deceleration and single- leg drop landings. Three-dimensional joint centre coordinate data and ground reaction force data were recorded from the initial contact to the peak ground reaction force (early contact phase of landing) using CODAmotion analysis system and Kistler force plate. Results indicated at the initial contact, foot inversion- eversion angles were significantly larger (p= 0.004) in cutting (-94.6 ̊ ± 91.4 ̊) and deceleration (-55.7 ̊ ± 36.1 ̊) compared to single- leg drop landings (4.1 ̊ ± 10.1 ̊). At peak ground reaction force, foot inversion- eversion were significantly larger (p= 0.05) in cutting (-45.9 ̊ ± 67.5 ̊) and deceleration (-41.0 ̊ ± 47.6 ̊) than single- leg drop landing (7.4 ̊ ± 7.4 ̊) technique. The magnitude of foot inversion- eversion was influenced by different movement patterns, yet netball players continued to show similar knee varus- valgus rotations (p= 0.36) despite the foot landing technique utilised. Since knee valgus is a contributing injury mechanism that increases compressive forces on the ACL, practitioners may refer to other lower limb mechanisms for screening protocols and the development of ACL injury prevention programs.