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Orthop J Sports Med. 2019 Feb 20;7(2):2325967119825858. doi: 10.1177/2325967119825858. eCollection 2019 Feb.

Five-Second Squeeze Testing in 333 Professional and Semiprofessional Male Ice Hockey Players: How Are Hip and Groin Symptoms, Strength, and Sporting Function Related?

Author information

Department of Health Sciences, Lund University, Lund, Sweden.
Sports Orthopedic Research Center-Copenhagen, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Copenhagen University Hospital, Amager-Hvidovre, Denmark.



Hip and groin problems are just as common in ice hockey as they are in soccer. The 5-second squeeze test (5SST) is a valid indicator of hip- and groin-related sporting function (self-reported function) in soccer and is suggested to be interpreted according to a "traffic light" approach in guiding the early identification and management of affected players. It is currently unknown how the 5SST relates to self-reported function and muscle strength in ice hockey players.


To investigate correlations between the 5SST result, self-reported function, and hip muscle strength in ice hockey players. A further aim was to investigate the discriminative ability of the "traffic light" approach (numeric rating scale [NRS] score: 0-2 = green, 3-5 = yellow, 6-10 = red) regarding levels of self-reported function and strength.

Study Design:

Cross-sectional study; Level of evidence, 3.


Professional and semiprofessional male ice hockey players (N = 333) performed the 5SST and completed the Sport subscale of the Copenhagen Hip and Groin Outcome Score (HAGOS). Bilateral adduction and abduction strength was measured using handheld dynamometry. Associations were estimated using Spearman rank-order correlations, and groups were compared using the Kruskal-Wallis test or analysis of variance. Standardized effect sizes (ESs) for differences in strength (Hedges g) and self-reported function (r) were provided.


The 5SST result was significantly correlated with self-reported function (rho, -0.319; P < .01) and hip muscle strength (rho, -0.157 to -0.305; P < .01). The HAGOS Sport scores differed significantly between all 3 traffic light groups (ES, 0.23-0.33; P ≤ .005). Players with an NRS score >2 (yellow or red light) had lower adduction (ES ≥ 0.75; P < .001) and abduction strength (yellow: ES, 0.30; P = .031) (red: ES, 0.51; P = .058) than players with a green light.


The 5SST result was significantly correlated with self-reported function as well as hip muscle strength and was able to discriminate between the traffic light levels in ice hockey players. Players with a yellow or red light had reduced adduction and abduction strength compared with players with a green light (NRS score ≤2). Routine 5SSTs may allow the early identification of affected ice hockey players and indicate yellow and red light situations, in which players may benefit from load management and appropriate hip muscle strengthening.


athlete monitoring; groin pain; measurement; muscle strength

Conflict of interest statement

The authors declared that there are no conflicts of interest in the authorship and publication of this contribution. AOSSM checks author disclosures against the Open Payments Database (OPD). AOSSM has not conducted an independent investigation on the OPD and disclaims any liability or responsibility relating thereto.

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