Proprioceptive Training and Injury Prevention in a Professional Men's Basketball Team: A Six-Year Prospective Study
Two articles on PainSci cite Riva 2016: 1. Sports Injury Prevention Tips 2. Proprioception, the True Sixth Sense
PainSci commentary on Riva 2016: ?This page is one of thousands in the PainScience.com 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.
This particularly long-term study followed a men’s basketball team for six years, tracking their injury rates in response to “classic proprioceptive [coordination] exercises” — which seemed to clearly reduce ankle sprains, “by 81% from the first to the third biennium.” The results actually showed reductions in knee sprains and back pain as well, but those results were much less statistically certain.
For whatever that’s worth, the athletes also got really good at the proprioceptive control exercises themselves. 😉
~ 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.
Single limb stance instability is a risk factor for lower extremity injuries. Therefore, the development of proprioception may play an important role in injury prevention. This investigation considered a professional basketball team for 6 years, integrating systematic proprioceptive activity in the training routine. The purpose was to assess the effectiveness of proprioceptive training programs based on quantifiable instability, to reduce ankle sprains, knee sprains, and low back pain through developing refined and long-lasting proprioceptive control. Fifty-five subjects were studied. In the first biennium (2004-2006), the preventive program consisted of classic proprioceptive exercises. In the second biennium (2006-2008), the proprioceptive training became quantifiable and interactive by means of electronic proprioceptive stations. In the third biennium (2008-2010), the intensity and the training volume increased while the session duration became shorter. Analysis of variance was used to analyze the differences in proprioceptive control between groups, years, and bienniums. Injury rates and rate ratios of injury during practices and games were estimated. The results showed a statistically significant reduction in the occurrence of ankle sprains by 81% from the first to the third biennium (p < 0.001). Low back pain showed similar results with a reduction of 77.8% (p < 0.005). The reduction in knee sprains was 64.5% (not significant). Comparing the third biennium with the level of all new entry players, proprioceptive control improved significantly by 72.2% (p < 0.001). These findings indicate that improvements in proprioceptive control in single stance may be a key factor for an effective reduction in ankle sprains, knee sprains, and low back pain.
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