Comparison of Drop Jump and Tuck Jump Knee Joint Kinematics in Elite Male Youth Soccer Players: Implications for Injury Risk Screening

in Journal of Sport Rehabilitation
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Context: Despite the popularity of jump-landing tasks being used to identify injury risk factors, minimal data currently exist examining differences in knee kinematics during commonly used bilateral jumping tasks. This is especially the case for rebounding-based protocols involving young athletes. Objective: To compare the frontal plane projection angles (FPPAs) during the drop vertical jump (DVJ) and tuck jump assessment (TJA) in a cohort of elite male youth soccer players of varying maturity status. Methods: A total of 57 male youth soccer players from an English championship soccer club participated in this study. Participants performed 3 trials of the DVJ and TJA, during which movement was recorded with 2-dimensional video cameras. FPPA for both right (FPPA-r) and left (FPPA-l) legs, with values <180° indicative of medial knee displacement. Results: On a whole-group level, FPPA-r (172.7° [7.4°] vs 177.2° [11.7°]; P < .05; effect size [ES] = 0.46) and FPPA-l (173.4° [7.3°] vs 179.2° [11.0°]; P < .05; ES = 0.62) were significantly greater for both limbs in the TJA compared with the DVJ; however, these differences were less consistent when grouped by maturity status. FPPA-r during the TJA was significantly and moderately greater in the circa-peak height velocity (PHV) group compared with the post-PHV cohorts (169.4° [6.4°] vs 175.3° [7.8°]; P < .05; ES = 0.49). Whole-group data showed moderate relationships for FPPA-r and FPPA-l between the TJA and DVJ; however, stronger relationships were shown in circa- and post-PHV players compared with the pre-PHV cohort. Conclusions: Considering that the TJA exposed players to a larger FPPA and was sensitive to between-group differences in FPPA-r, the TJA could be viewed as a more suitable screen for identifying FPPA in young male soccer players.

Lloyd, Oliver, and Read are with the School of Sport and Health Sciences, Cardiff Metropolitan University, Cardiff, United Kingdom. Lloyd and Oliver are also with the Sport Performance Research Institute, New Zealand (SPRINZ), AUT University, Auckland, New Zealand. Lloyd is also with the Centre for Sport Science and Human Performance, Waikato Institute of Technology, Hamilton, Waikato, New Zealand. Myer is with the Division of Sports Medicine, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, OH, USA; Department of Pediatrics and Orthopaedic Surgery, College of Medicine, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, OH, USA; and The Micheli Center for Sports Injury Prevention, Boston, MA, USA. De Ste Croix is with the School of Sport and Exercise, University of Gloucestershire, Gloucester, United Kingdom. Wass is with the English Institute of Sport, Manchester Institute of Health and Performance, Manchester, United Kingdom. Read is also with Athlete Health and Performance Research Centre, Aspetar Orthopaedic and Sports Medicine Hospital, Doha, Qatar.

Lloyd (rlloyd@cardiffmet.ac.uk) is corresponding author.
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