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Gazzetta Medica Italiana Archivio per le Scienze Mediche 2012 April;171(2):143-56

language: English

An investigation into the role of a footwear intervention program for professional footballers: an intra-club control and intervention study

Kinchington M. 1, Ball K. 2, Naughton G. 3

1 School of Human Movement, Recreation & Performance, Victoria University, Melbourne, Australia;
2 School of Human Movement, Recreation & Performance, Victoria University, Melbourne, Australia;
3 The Centre of Physical Activity Across the Lifespan, Australian Catholic University, Fitzroy, Australia


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Aim. Footwear comfort has been shown to affect musculoskeletal comfort and injury. The purpose of the study was to examine the role of footwear in a football environment between two groups at an intra-club level. The hypothesis for the study was the use of a turf shoe for rugby league training results in improved lower limb comfort compared to training in a conventional football boot.
Methods. Aspects of lower limb comfort associated with footwear were examined in a cohort of National Rugby League players (N=53) from one club over one season. The design of the study was a non-randomised clinical trial. Using a participant preference method, two groups were formed. An intervention group used a designated style of training shoe over the season and a control group used a regular football boot.
Results. The results indicated a designated style of training shoe had benefits when lower limb comfort was compared between the intervention and control groups (P<0.0001), sustained fewer time loss events, mean 1.7 (SD 1.2) v 3.9 (SD 1.5), and players participated in more training sessions (P<0.0001) and matches (P=0.002).
Conclusion. These results indicate a designated training shoe may have protective qualities for the lower limb and has the capacity as an instrument of a tailored footwear program to aid the lower limb comfort of footballers.

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