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Clin J Sport Med. 2008 Jul;18(4):329-37. doi: 10.1097/JSM.0b013e31817f3e35.

The effects of neuromuscular training on knee joint motor control during sidecutting in female elite soccer and handball players.

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Institute of Sports Medicine, Bispebjerg Hospital, Copenhagen, Denmark.



The project aimed to implement neuromuscular training during a full soccer and handball league season and to experimentally analyze the neuromuscular adaptation mechanisms elicited by this training during a standardized sidecutting maneuver known to be associated with non-contact anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury.


The players were tested before and after 1 season without implementation of the prophylactic training and subsequently before and after a full season with the implementation of prophylactic training.


A total of 12 female elite soccer players and 8 female elite team handball players aged 26 +/- 3 years at the start of the study.


The subjects participated in a specific neuromuscular training program previously shown to reduce non-contact ACL injury.


Neuromuscular activity at the knee joint, joint angles at the hip and knee, and ground reaction forces were recorded during a sidecutting maneuver. Neuromuscular activity in the prelanding phase was obtained 10 and 50 ms before foot strike on a force plate and at 10 and 50 ms after foot strike on a force plate.


Neuromuscular training markedly increased before activity and landing activity electromyography (EMG) of the semitendinosus (P < 0.05), while quadriceps EMG activity remained unchanged.


Neuromuscular training increased EMG activity for the medial hamstring muscles, thereby decreasing the risk of dynamic valgus. This observed neuromuscular adaptation during sidecutting could potentially reduce the risk for non-contact ACL injury.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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