Clinical Scenario: Physical activity is vital for human health. Musculoskeletal injury may inhibit adults from participating in physical activity, and this amount may be less than adults without a history of musculoskeletal injury. Clinical Question: Do individuals with a history of ankle or knee musculoskeletal injury participate in less objectively measured physical activity compared with healthy controls? Summary of Key Findings: Four studies were included. Two studies concluded patients who have undergone an anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction (ACLR) spent less time in moderate to vigorous physical activity levels when compared with healthy controls, but still achieved the daily recommended amount of physical activity. One study determined that participants with CAI took fewer steps per day compared with the control group. The fourth study determined patients with patellofemoral pain were less physically active than healthy controls as they took fewer steps per day and spent less time participating in mild and high activity. Clinical Bottom Line: There is consistent, high quality evidence that demonstrates individuals with a history of ankle or knee musculoskeletal injury participate in less objectively measured physical activity compared with healthy individuals. Strength of Recommendation: Due to nature of study designs of the included articles in this critically appraised topic, we recommend a grade of 3B.
Amy R. Barchek, Shelby E. Baez, Matthew C. Hoch and Johanna M. Hoch
Dawn T. Gulick
Background: Knee disorders prevalence is estimated at more than 50% in a lifetime. There are over 250,000 anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injuries per year in the United States. There are over 175,000 ACL reconstructions annually. This study was a double-blinded design to establish the reliability and validity of a new orthopedic device to measure linear translation of the tibia on the femur (ACL testing). Methods: A Zeiss Smartzoom microscope was used as the gold standard to assess the ability of the Mobil-Aider™ to measure linear translation. Sixty blinded measures were taken with each of 6 different devices. Results: Both the intraclass correlation and the Pearson correlation were .986. The Cronbach alpha reliability analysis was 0.992. Independent 1-sample t tests were performed on the differences between the Mobil-Aider™ and Zeiss values, and were not found to be significant (P = .42); that is, they were the same. Bland–Altman plot and a linear regression revealed no propositional bias. Finally, with 360 measures over 6 devices, the power of this study was calculated to be 100%. Discussion: This data are the first step in establishing reliability and concurrent validity of a new device. As a result of the current data, the Mobil-Aider™ device is deemed a promising orthopedic tool for use in assessing the laxity of the ACL. Additional testing needs to be performed on both healthy and injured knees. Conclusions: There is potential for the Mobil-Aider™ to contribute to the assessment of ACL injuries, but additional human testing is needed.
Salman Nazary-Moghadam, Mahyar Salavati, Ali Esteki, Behnam Akhbari, Sohrab Keyhani and Afsaneh Zeinalzadeh
Objectives: The current study assessed the intrasession and intersession reliability of the knee flexion–extension Lyapunov exponent in patients with anterior cruciate ligament deficiency and healthy individuals. Study Design: University research laboratory. Methods: Kinematic data were collected in 14 patients with anterior cruciate ligament deficiency and 14 healthy individuals walked on a treadmill at a self-selected, low, and high speed, with and without cognitive load. The intraclass correlation coefficient, standard error of measurement, minimal metrically detectable change, and percentage of coefficient of variation were calculated to assess the reliability. Results: The knee flexion–extension Lyapunov exponent had high intrasession reliability, with intraclass correlation coefficients ranging from .83 to .98. In addition, the intersession intraclass correlation coefficient values of these measurements ranged from .35 to .85 regardless of group, gait speed, and dual tasking. In general, relative and absolute reliability were higher in the patients with anterior cruciate ligament deficiency than in the healthy individuals. Conclusions: Although knee flexion–extension Lyapunov exponent demonstrates good intrasession reliability, its low intersession reliability indicates that changes of these measurements between different days should be interpreted with caution.
Roel De Ridder, Tine Willems, Jos Vanrenterghem, Ruth Verrelst, Cedric De Blaiser and Philip Roosen
Context: Although taping has been proven effective in reducing ankle sprain events in individuals with chronic ankle instability, insight into the precise working mechanism remains limited. Objectives: To evaluate whether the use of taping changes ankle joint kinematics during a sagittal and frontal plane landing task in subjects with chronic ankle instability. Design: Repeated measure design. Setting: Laboratory setting. Participants: A total of 28 participants with chronic ankle instability performed a forward and side jump landing task in a nontaped and taped condition. The taping procedure consisted of a double “figure of 6” and a medial heel lock. Main Outcome Measures: 3D ankle joint kinematics was registered. Statistical parametric mapping was used to assess taping effect on mean ankle joint angles and angular velocity over the landing phase. Results: For both the forward and side jump, a less plantar flexed and a less inverted position of the ankle joint were found in the preparatory phase till around touchdown (TD) in the taped condition (P < .05). In addition, for both jump landing protocols, a decreased dorsiflexion angular velocity was found after TD (P < .05). During the side jump protocol, a brief period of increased inversion angular velocity was registered after TD (P < .05). Conclusions: Taping is capable of altering ankle joint kinematics prior to TD, placing the ankle joint in a less vulnerable position at TD.
Kenji Kanazawa, Yoshihiro Hagiwara, Takuya Sekiguchi, Ryo Fujita, Kazuaki Suzuki, Masashi Koide, Akira Ando and Yutaka Yabe
Context: Range of motion (ROM) in the glenohumeral joint decreases with age in healthy subjects; however, the underlying mechanism remains unclear. The process of aging of the joint capsule, including the coracohumeral ligament (CHL), could affect ROM limitation. Objective: This study investigated correlations between elasticity of the CHL, evaluated by means of shear-wave elastography, and age, side dominance, and ROM in healthy individuals. Design: Experimental study. Setting: Laboratory. Subjects: Eighty-four healthy volunteers (39 men and 45 women, mean age: 42.6 y) were included. Main Outcome Measures: Subjects were divided into 3 age groups: younger (20–39 y), middle (40–59 y), and older (≥60 y) age groups. With participants in the supine position, CHL elasticity in both shoulders was evaluated in both neutral and 30° external rotation, with arms at the sides. ROM, including forward flexion, lateral elevation, external rotation, 90° abduction with external rotation, and hand behind the back were measured with participants in the standing position. Results: The CHL elastic modulus was higher in the older group than in the younger group in the neutral (78.4 kPa [SD: 37.1] and 56.6 kPa [SD: 31.7], respectively) and 30° external rotation positions (135.5 kPa [SD: 63.5] and 71.4 kPa [SD: 32.2], respectively). Negative correlations were found between the CHL elastic modulus and ROM in terms of 30° external rotation and both external rotation (R = −.59, P = .02) and 90° abduction with external rotation (R = −.71, P = .003) in the older group, with correlation coefficients increasing with age. Conclusions: Significant correlations were identified between CHL elasticity and ROM in both external rotation and 90° abduction with external rotation with increasing age. Decreased CHL elasticity was strongly associated with decreased shoulder ROM in middle-aged and older individuals.
Tobias Lundgren, Gustaf Reinebo, Markus Näslund and Thomas Parling
Despite the growing popularity of mindfulness and acceptance-based performance enhancement methods in applied sport psychology, evidence for their efficacy is scarce. The purpose of the current study is to test the feasibility and effect of a psychological training program based on Acceptance and Commitment Training (ACT) developed for ice hockey players. A controlled group feasibility designed study was conducted and included 21 elite male ice hockey players. The ACT program consisted of four, once a week, sessions with homework assignments between sessions. The results showed significant increase in psychological flexibility for the players in the training group. The outcome was positive for all feasibility measures. Participants found the psychological training program important to them as ice hockey players and helpful in their ice hockey development. Desirably, future studies should include objective performance data as outcome measure to foster more valid evidence for performance enhancement methods in applied sport psychology.
Ui-Jae Hwang, Sung-Hoon Jung, Hyun-A Kim, Jun-Hee Kim and Oh-Yun Kwon
Context: Electrical muscle stimulation (EMS) was designed for artificial muscle activation or superimposed training. Objectives: To compare the effects of 8 weeks of superimposed technique (ST; application of electrical stimulation during a voluntary muscle action) and EMS on the cross-sectional area of the rectus abdominis, lateral abdominal wall, and on lumbopelvic control. Setting: University research laboratory. Design: Randomized controlled trial. Participants: Fifty healthy subjects were recruited and randomly assigned to either the ST or EMS group. Intervention: The participants engaged with the electrical stimulation techniques (ST or EMS) for 8 weeks. Main Outcome Measures: In all participants, the cross-sectional area of the rectus abdominis and lateral abdominal wall was measured by magnetic resonance imaging and lumbopelvic control, quantified using the single-leg and double-leg lowering tests. Results: There were no significant differences in the cross-sectional area of the rectus abdominis (right: P = .70, left: P = .99) or lateral abdominal wall (right: P = .07, left: P = .69) between groups. There was a significant difference between groups in the double-leg lowering test (P = .03), but not in the single-leg lowering test (P = .88). There were significant differences between the preintervention and postintervention in the single-leg (P < .001) and double-leg lowering tests (P < .001). Conclusions: ST could improve lumbopelvic control in the context of athletic training and fitness.
Kenneth Färnqvist, Stephen Pearson and Peter Malliaras
Context: Exercise is seen as the most evidence-based treatment for managing tendinopathy and although the type of exercise used to manage tendinopathy may induce adaptation in healthy tendons, it is not clear whether these adaptations occur in tendinopathy and if so whether they are associated with improved clinical outcomes. Objective: The aim of the study was to synthesize available evidence for adaptation of the Achilles tendon to eccentric exercise and the relationship between adaptation (change in tendon thickness) and clinical outcomes among people with Achilles tendinopathy. Evidence Acquisition: The search was performed in September 2018 in several databases. Studies investigating the response (clinical outcome and imaging on ultrasound/magnetic resonance imaging) of pathological tendons (tendinopathy, tendinosis, and partial rupture) to at least 12 weeks of eccentric exercise were included. Multiple studies that investigated the same interventions and outcome were pooled and presented in effect size estimates, mean difference, and 95% confidence intervals if measurement scales were the same, or standard mean difference and 95% confidence intervals if measurements scales were different. Where data could not be pooled the studies were qualitatively synthesized based on van Tulder et al. Evidence Synthesis: Eight studies met the inclusion and exclusion criteria and were included in the review. There was strong evidence that Achilles tendon thickness does not decrease in parallel with improved clinical outcomes. Conclusions: Whether a longer time to follow-up is more important than the intervention (ie, just the time per se) for a change in tendon thickness remains unknown. Future studies should investigate whether exercise (or other treatments) can be tailored to optimize tendon adaptation and function, and whether this relates to clinical outcomes.
Natalie L. Myers, Guadalupe Mexicano and Kristin V. Aguilar
Clinical Scenario: Workload monitoring and management of an athlete is viewed by many as an essential training component to determine if an athlete is adapting to a training program and to minimize injury risk. Although training workload may be measured a variety of different ways, session rate of perceived exertion (sRPE) is often used in the literature due to its clinical ease. In recent years, sports scientists have been investigating sRPE as a measure of internal workload and its relationship to injury in elite-level athletes using a metric known as the acute:chronic workload ratio (ACWR). This critically appraised topic was conducted to determine if internal workload using the ACWR is associated with injury. Focused Clinical Question: In elite-level athletes, is there an association between the ACWR for sRPE and noncontact injuries? Summary of Search, Best Evidence Appraised, and Key Findings: The literature was searched for studies investigating the association between noncontact injuries and the sRPE ACWR in elite athletes. Three prospective cohort studies were included. Two studies found that high ACWR led to 2.0 to 4.5 times greater injury risk compared with a more balanced ACWR. One study found that low chronic workloads coupled with a low ACWR were associated with injury. Clinical Bottom Line: The majority of evidence suggests that when the acute workload exceeds the chronic workload, there is an increase in injury risk. The evidence also supports that a low chronic workload with a low ACWR should be considered as an injury risk factor. Strength of Recommendation: Based on the American Family Physician’s Strength of Recommendation Taxonomy, there is level A evidence to support the sRPE ACWR as a risk factor for noncontract injuries in elite athletes.
Clinical Scenario: Ice hockey and soccer are both dynamic sports that involve continuous, unpredictable play. These athletes consistently demonstrate higher rates of groin strains compared with other contact sports. Measuring the hip adductor/abductor ratio has the potential to expose at-risk players, reduce injury rates, and preserve groin health in players with chronic strains. Focused Clinical Question: What is the clinical utility of measuring the hip adductor/abductor ratio for preseason and in-season ice hockey and soccer players? Summary of Key Findings: Three studies, all of which were prospective cohort designs, were included. One study involved assessing preseason strength and flexibility as a risk factor for adductor strains in professional ice hockey players. Another study performed with the same professional hockey team used preseason hip adductor/abductor strength ratios to screen for those players who would benefit from a strengthening intervention aimed at reducing the incidence of adductor strains. The final study, which was performed in elite U17 soccer players, assessed the effectiveness of monthly in-season strength monitoring as a guide to trigger in-season interventions to decrease injury incidence. Clinical Bottom Line: Measuring the hip adductor/abductor strength ratio in hockey and soccer players can be a beneficial preseason and in-season tool to predict future groin strain risk and screen for athletes who might benefit from a strengthening intervention. Strength of Recommendation: Level 3 evidence exists to support monitoring the hip adductor/abductor strength ratio to assess and reduce the risk of adductor strains in ice hockey and soccer players.