Functional Movement Scores and Longitudinal Performance Outcomes in Elite Track and Field Athletes

in International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance
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Subjects with scores on the Functional Movement Screen (FMS) assessment of ≤14 or with at least 1 bilateral asymmetry have been shown to have greater future injury incidence than subjects with FMS scores >14 or no movement asymmetries.

Purpose:

To determine if FMS injury risk factors extend to longitudinal competitive performance outcomes in elite track and field athletes.

Methods:

Elite track and field athletes were examined (N = 121), each completing an FMS before the 2011 competitive season. Best competition marks for the year were obtained from athletes’ actual performances for 2010 and 2011. Performance change between 2010 and 2011 was examined in cohorts of FMS scores ≤14 (LoFMS) vs >14 (HiFMS), athletes with bilateral asymmetry in at least 1 of the 5 FMS movements vs athletes with no asymmetry, and athletes who scored 1 on the deep-squat movement vs athletes who scored 2 or 3.

Results:

HiFMS had a significantly different change in performance from 2010 to 2011 (0.41% ± 2.50%, n = 80) compared with LoFMS (−0.51% ± 2.30%, P = .03, n = 41). Athletes with no asymmetries had a longitudinal improvement in performance (+0.60% ± 2.86%, n = 50) compared with athletes with at least 1 asymmetry (−0.26% ± 2.10%, P = .03, n = 71). Athletes who scored 1 on the deep-squat movement had a significantly different change in performance (−1.07 ± 2.08%, n = 22) vs athletes who scored 2 (0.13% ± 2.28%, P = .03, n = 87) or 3 (1.98% ± 3.31%, P = .001, n = 12).

Conclusion:

Functional movement ability, known to be associated with the likelihood of future injury, is also related to the ability to improve longitudinal competitive performance outcomes.

Chapman and Laymon are with the Dept of Kinesiology, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN. Arnold is with the St Vincent Sports Performance Center, St Vincent Hospital, Indianapolis, IN.