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Injury rates lower in soccer (football) teams with a good warm-up programme

PainSci » bibliography » Soligard et al 2010
Tags: patellar pain, IT band pain, shin pain, plantar fasciitis, exercise, knee, foot, arthritis, aging, pain problems, leg, limbs, overuse injury, injury, running, self-treatment, treatment, tendinosis

Four articles on PainSci cite Soligard 2010: 1. Sports Injury Prevention Tips2. Mobilize!3. Quite a Stretch4. The Complete Guide to Muscle Strains

PainSci commentary on Soligard 2010: ?This page is one of thousands in the bibliography. It is not a general article: it is focused on a single scientific paper, and it may provide only just enough context for the summary to make sense. Links to other papers and more general information are provided wherever possible.

Researchers found that injury rates were significantly lower in soccer (football) teams that diligently performed warmup exercises (“The 11+”, a warmup program recommended by FIFA, which notably does not include stretching). On the one hand, there was not much difference between a little warming up (low participation) and a bit more warming up (average participation). But players and teams that did an especially good job of warming up (“twice as many injury prevention sessions”) got solid results: “the risk of overall and acute injuries was reduced by more than a third among players with high compliance compared with players with intermediate compliance.” That extra enthusiasm went a long way!

~ Paul Ingraham

original abstract Abstracts here may not perfectly match originals, for a variety of technical and practical reasons. Some abstacts are truncated for my purposes here, if they are particularly long-winded and unhelpful. I occasionally add clarifying notes. And I make some minor corrections.

BACKGROUND: Participants' compliance, attitudes and beliefs have the potential to influence the efficacy of an intervention greatly.

OBJECTIVE: To characterise team and player compliance with a comprehensive injury prevention warm-up programme for football (The 11+), and to assess attitudes towards injury prevention among coaches and their association with compliance and injury risk.

STUDY DESIGN: A prospective cohort study and retrospective survey based on a cluster-randomised controlled trial with teams as the unit of randomisation.

METHODS: Compliance, exposure and injuries were registered prospectively in 65 of 125 football teams (1055 of 1892 female Norwegian players aged 13-17 years and 65 of 125 coaches) throughout one football season (March-October 2007). Standardised telephone interviews were conducted to assess coaches' attitudes towards injury prevention.

RESULTS: Teams completed the injury prevention programme in 77% (mean 1.3 sessions per week) of all training and match sessions, and players in 79% (mean 0.8 sessions per week) of the sessions they attended. Compared with players with intermediate compliance, players with high compliance with the programme had a 35% lower risk of all injuries (RR 0.65, 95% CI 0.46 to 0.91, p=0.011). Coaches who had previously utilised injury prevention training coached teams with a 46% lower risk of injury (OR 0.54, 95% CI 0.33 to 0.87, p=0.011).

CONCLUSIONS: Compliance with the injury prevention programme was high, and players with high compliance had significantly lower injury risk than players with intermediate compliance. Positive attitudes towards injury prevention correlated with high compliance and lower injury risk.

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