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The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 2021 Jun 17

DOI: 10.23736/S0022-4707.21.12576-9

Copyright © 2021 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

Pre- and post-match hop test outcomes in soccer players returning to performance after lower extremity injury

Astrid VEREIJKEN 1, 2, 3 , Inne AERTS 1, Emiel van TRIJFFEL 4, Bruno TASSIGNON 2, Jo VERSCHUEREN 1, 2, Romain MEEUSEN 2, 5

1 SOMT University of Physiotherapy, Amersfoort, the Netherlands; 2 Human Physiology and Sports Physiotherapy research group, Faculty of Physical Education and Physical Therapy, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Brussels, Belgium; 3 Annatommie MC, Amersfoort, the Netherlands; 4 Ziekenhuisgroep Twente, ZGT Academy, Amersfoort, the Netherlands; 5 Strategic Research Program Exercise and the Brain in Health & Disease, the added value of Human-Centered Robotics, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Brussels, Belgium


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BACKGROUND: Most soccer injuries concern the lower extremity with a higher injury rate during the second half of matches. In advising safe return to sport, hop tests are usually assessed at the point of return to sport under non-fatigued conditions. No studies exist investigating hop test outcomes before and after a match in soccer players returning to performance after lower extremity injury and non-injured teammates. The objective is to assess differences in hop test outcomes before and after a match in and between soccer players returning to performance after lower extremity injury and their non-injured teammates.
METHODS: A repeated-measures design was used to measure outcomes on five hop tests before and after a soccer match. For analyzing differences in hop tests before and after a match, paired sample t-tests were used. Independent t-tests were used to analyze differences between soccer players after injury and non-injured teammates. Effect sizes were calculated using Cohen’s d.
RESULTS: Hop tests were completed by 61 amateur soccer players after injury and 121 non-injured teammates. Differences in hop tests before and after the match within both groups had negligible to small effect sizes (d=0.00-0.49), except for the figure of 8 and 30 seconds side hop in the injured leg of RTPf soccer players (d=0.56 and d=0.71 respectively). Differences between both groups were negligible to small (d=0.00-0.36).
CONCLUSIONS: Soccer players returning to performance after a lower extremity injury showed similar scores on hop tests than their non-injured teammates. More demanding sport-specific performance test and measurement of quality of movement are additionally recommended for safe return to sport decision-making.


KEY WORDS: Lower extremity; Return to sport; Soccer

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