Prevention of groin problems among football players

Groin injuries are highly prevalent in sports involving explosive actions like kicking, cutting, change of directions and rapid acceleration. In football, the seasonal prevalence of hip and/or groin pain is at least 50%. With the high prevalence of groin injuries in football (and the uncertainty that the true prevalence may be even higher), there is clearly a need for prevention of groin injuries among football players. However, no previous studies have proven effect on groin injury risk.

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Formal title

Prevention of groin problems among football players

Formal

The aim of this study is to investigate the preventive effect of an adductor strengthening program on the prevalence of groin problems in male football players.

Description

We have in 2015 and 2016 conducted 3 different projects and the last data-collection was finished in November 2016.

GROIN PROBLEMS IN MALE SOCCER ARE MORE COMMON THAN PREVIOUSLY REPORTED
This project was conducted in 2015 with 15 teams of both gender and at different levels of play in male football.

Elite male players had three times higher risk of reporting groin problems compared to elite female players, while playing level did not influence the risk of reporting a groin problem among males. Male football players reported a weekly prevalence on 29%.

The manuscript is accepted by The American journal of Sports Medicine and will be published in the spring 2017.

THE 11+ SEEMS TO LACK EXERCISES SPECIFICALLY TARGETED TO INCREASE HIP ADDUCTION STRENGTH
The project was conducted early in 2016 including 45 elite male U19 football players. Players were randomized into two groups; one group carried out the standard FIFA 11+ program, while the other carried out the FIFA 11+, but replaced the Nordic Hamstring exercise with the Copenhagen Adduction exercise. Both groups performed the intervention three times weekly for 8 weeks. Players completed eccentric hip adduction, eccentric knee flexor strength and 20m sprint test before and after the intervention.

Between-group analyses showed that there was a significant greater increase in eccentric hip adduction strength in favour of the group performing the Copenhagen Adduction exercise while there was no within-group change in the group that used the standard FIFA 11+ program.

The manuscript is submitted and will be published in 2017.

PREVENTION OF GROIN PROBLEMS IN MALE FOOTBALL PLAYERS
Approximately 650 football players (34 teams) from second and third level in Norwegian football have been included in this project. Players were randomised by team into an intervention group and control group. Players in the intervention group carried out a hip adduction strength exercise as a part of warm-up from pre-season and throughout the whole 2016 season.

Data from this project are currently being analysed.

Partners: Per Hölmich (DK), Kristian Thorborg (DK) og Andreas Serner (DK)