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BMJ. 2008 Dec 9;337:a2469. doi: 10.1136/bmj.a2469.

Comprehensive warm-up programme to prevent injuries in young female footballers: cluster randomised controlled trial.

Author information

  • 1Oslo Sports Trauma Research Centre, Norwegian School of Sport Sciences, PO Box 4014 Ullevaal Stadion, 0806 Oslo, Norway. torbjorn.soligard@nih.no

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To examine the effect of a comprehensive warm-up programme designed to reduce the risk of injuries in female youth football.

DESIGN:

Cluster randomised controlled trial with clubs as the unit of randomisation.

SETTING:

125 football clubs from the south, east, and middle of Norway (65 clusters in the intervention group; 60 in the control group) followed for one league season (eight months).

PARTICIPANTS:

1892 female players aged 13-17 (1055 players in the intervention group; 837 players in the control group).

INTERVENTION:

A comprehensive warm-up programme to improve strength, awareness, and neuromuscular control during static and dynamic movements.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE:

Injuries to the lower extremity (foot, ankle, lower leg, knee, thigh, groin, and hip).

RESULTS:

During one season, 264 players had relevant injuries: 121 players in the intervention group and 143 in the control group (rate ratio 0.71, 95% confidence interval 0.49 to 1.03). In the intervention group there was a significantly lower risk of injuries overall (0.68, 0.48 to 0.98), overuse injuries (0.47, 0.26 to 0.85), and severe injuries (0.55, 0.36 to 0.83).

CONCLUSION:

Though the primary outcome of reduction in lower extremity injury did not reach significance, the risk of severe injuries, overuse injuries, and injuries overall was reduced. This indicates that a structured warm-up programme can prevent injuries in young female football players.

TRIAL REGISTRATION:

ISRCTN10306290.

Comment in

PMID:
19066253
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC2600961
Free PMC Article

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