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J Sports Sci. 2014;32(14):1333-40. doi: 10.1080/02640414.2014.889849. Epub 2014 Mar 26.

Hip adductor activations during run-to-cut manoeuvres in compression shorts: implications for return to sport after groin injury.

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a Department of Orthopaedics , The Ohio State University , Columbus , OH , USA.


Athletes at high risk of groin strains in sports such as hockey and soccer often choose to wear shorts with directional compression to aid in prevention of or recovery from hip adductor strains. Large, eccentric contractions are known to result in or exacerbate strain injuries, but it is unknown if these shorts have a beneficial effect on hip adductor muscle activity. In this study, surface electromyography (EMG) of the adductor longus and ground reaction force (GRF) data were obtained simultaneously on 29 healthy individuals without previous history of serious injury while performing unanticipated 45° run-to-cut manoeuvres in a laboratory setting wearing shorts with non-directional compression (control, HeatGear, Under Armour, USA) or shorts with directional compression (directional, CoreShort PRO, Under Armour, USA), in random order. Average adductor activity in the stance leg was significantly lower in the directional condition than in the control condition during all parts of stance phase (all P < 0.042). From this preliminary analysis, wearing directional compression shorts appears to be associated with reduced stance limb hip adductor activity. Athletes seeking to reduce demand on the hip adductors as they approach full return to activities may benefit from the use of directional compression shorts.


adductor; biomechanics; groin; strain

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