Keywords Soccer, postural control, lower extremity injuries
Abstract Youth soccer players bear a particular high risk of injury due to a potential lack on an adequate level of physical fitness, which is considered as an intrinsic risk factor for injuries (Bahr & Krosshaug, 2005). Typically, lower extremity injuries occur in situations characterised by rapid changes of direction and single-leg landing, often with the player getting out of balance. The ability to maintain balance has received more attention in injury prediction as increased variation in postural stability is associated with an altered neuromuscular control strategy and may lead to injuries (Murphy, Connolly, & Beynnon, 2003). However, prospective research is rare, and the relation between insufficient postural stability and injury is still unclear. Typically, force platform serve as gold-standard for the analysis of postural control. For in-field diagnosis, wearable sensor insoles provide an alternative diagnostic tool. However, less empirical evidence on sensor insoles for injury prediction is given. Furthermore, little research exists on balance measures as potential intrinsic injury risk factor in youth soccer.
The aim of this study was therefore to investigate the predictive value of the postural control measured by wearable sensor insoles in male youth soccer players.