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The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 2019 October;59(10):1716-23

DOI: 10.23736/S0022-4707.19.09267-3


language: English

Plantar pressures in male adolescent soccer players and its associations with bone geometry and strength

Gabriel LOZANO-BERGES 1, 2, 3, Ángel MATUTE-LLORENTE 1, 2, 3, 4, Alejandro GÓMEZ-BRUTON 1, 2, 3, 4, Víctor ALFARO-SANTAFÉ 5, Alex GONZÁLEZ-AGÜERO 1, 2, 3, 4, Germán VICENTE-RODRÍGUEZ 1, 2, 3, 4, José A. CASAJÚS 1, 2, 3, 4

1 Growth, Exercise, Nutrition and Development Research Group (GENUD), University of Zaragoza, Zaragoza, Spain; 2 Faculty of Health and Sport Science (FCSD), Department of Physiatry and Nursing, University of Zaragoza, Huesca, Spain; 3 Agri-food Institute of Aragón IA2, University of Zaragoza, Zaragoza, Spain; 4 Physiopathology of Obesity and Nutrition Networking Biomedical Research Center (CIBERObn), Madrid, Spain; 5 Podoactiva, Huesca, Spain

BACKGROUND: Mechanical loads exerted by soccer-specific actions increase bone remodeling activity. Nevertheless, little is known about the relationship between plantar pressure and bone structure. Therefore, the aim of this study was to compare bone geometry and strength between soccer players who exhibited different maximum values of the average pressures (MP) when performing a combination of soccer-specific tasks.
METHODS: Forty male adolescent soccer players (mean age 13.2±0.5 years) and 13 controls (mean age 13.1±0.9 years) participated in this study. Biofoot® system was used to measure MP at the non-dominant foot during a circuit of soccer-specific tasks. Cluster analysis was performed to classify players into groups of similar MP profiles resulting two different groups as follows: 15 players with high MP (SOC-HP; mean MP: 392.7±68.2 kPa) and 25 with low MP (SOC-LP; mean MP: 261.0±49.6 kPa). Total and cortical volumetric bone mineral content (Tt.BMC/Ct.BMC), cross-sectional area (Tt.Ar/Ct.Ar), cortical thickness (Ct.Th), fracture load in X-axis, and polar strength index (SSIp) were measured at 38% of the non-dominant tibia by peripheral quantitative computed tomography. Bone geometry and strength comparisons between SOC-HP and SOC-LP were performed using analyses of covariance controlling by weight and tibia length.
RESULTS: Greater Tt.BMC, Ct.BMC and Tt.Ar. were found in SOC-HP compared to CG (Tt.BMC: 3.22vs2.95 g, Ct.BMC: 2.95vs2.68 g, Ct.Ar: 280vs253 mm2; P<0.05). Nevertheless, no significant bone geometry and strength differences were found between soccer groups and between SOC-LP and CG (P>0.05).
CONCLUSIONS: Developing high MP when training and playing soccer might be favorable to bone development.

KEY WORDS: Adolescent; Soccer; Foot; Bone and bones

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