The Validity of the Nordic Hamstring Lower for a Field-Based Assessment of Eccentric Hamstring Strength

in Journal of Sport Rehabilitation
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Context:

Hamstring injury-risk assessment has primarily been investigated using isokinetic dynamometry. However, practical issues such as cost and availability limit the widespread application of isokinetics for injury-risk assessment; thus, field-based alternatives for assessing eccentric hamstring strength are needed.

Objective:

The aim of this study was to investigate the validity of the angle achieved during Nordic hamstring lowers (break-point angle) as a field-based test for eccentric hamstring strength.

Design:

Exploratory study.

Setting:

Laboratory.

Participants:

Sixteen male (n = 7) and female (n = 9) soccer players (mean ± SD age 24 ± 6 y, height 1.77 ± 0.12 m, and body mass 68.5 ± 16.5 kg) acted as subjects for the study.

Main Outcome Measures:

The authors explored relationships between the Nordic break-point angle (the point at which the subject can no longer resist the increasing gravitational moment during a Nordic hamstring lower) measured from video and isokinetic peak torque and angle of peak torque of right- and left-knee flexors.

Results:

The results revealed a meaningful relationship between eccentric knee-flexor peak torque (average of right and left limbs) and the Nordic break-point angle (r = −.808, r2 = 65%, P < .00001). However, there was a weak relationship observed (r = .480, r2 = 23%, P = .06) between break-point angle and the angle of peak torque (average of right and left limbs).

Conclusions:

The results suggest that the break-point angle achieved during Nordic hamstring lowers could be used as a field-based assessment of eccentric hamstring strength.

The authors are with the Research Centre for Health, Sport and Rehabilitation Sciences, University of Salford, Greater Manchester, United Kingdom. Address author correspondence to Paul Jones at P.A.Jones@salford.ac.uk