An examination of differences in postural control in injured athletes and uninjured athletes

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athletic training , 2005
Osgood, Miranda June
Objectives: To determine whether there is a difference in translation of center of force between injured and uninjured individuals while doing a double-legged, right-legged, and left-legged squat with eyes open and eyes closed. Design and Settings: A repeated measures, counter-balanced, one session design was used. Five 2 x 2 (injury status x eye condition) analyses of variance were calculated for both double-legged and single-legged squat data. Five 2 x 2 (dominance x eye condition) analyses of variance were calculated to determine whether dominance played a role in postural control. Subjects: College-age males and females who were self-reported as physically active participated in the study, with fifteen injured and fifteen uninjured subjects (n = 30). Injured was defined as having a minimum injury of one lateral ankle sprain 1-12 months ago; uninjured was defined as having no history of lower extremity injury. Measurements: The Matscan™ from Tekscan, Inc. was used to assess translation of center of force. Subjects performed double-legged squats, right-legged squats, and left-legged squats with eyes open and eyes closed; three trials of each condition were recorded for a total of 18 per subject. The squat depth was 60° of knee flexion. Between squat conditions, subjects were allowed to rest briefly. Results: Injured and uninjured subjects displayed similar mean values of translation of COF in all variables in all squat conditions regardless of eye condition. However, as was expected, the mean values of translation of COF were significantly different in the main effect eye condition, with the translation being greater with eyes closed. Conclusions: Postural control was not significantly affected by musculoskeletal injury. Further research with attention to subject history and a larger subject group are recommended.