February 2015

Female high school basketball players benefit from neuromuscular training

In the moment: Sports medicine

By Jordana Bieze Foster

A six-week progressive neuromuscular training program is associated with significant improvement in single-leg balance on unstable surfaces in female high school basketball players, according to research from Bellarmine University in Louisville, KY.

Prompted by a girls’ high school basketball coach who was concerned about preventing injuries in his players, the researchers assessed balance, strength, and self-reported function in all 15 team members before and after completion of a six-week neuromuscular training program. The eight-minute program, incorporated into the team’s regular warm-up three days per week during the competitive season, emphasized balance on unstable surfaces while performing basketball-specific skills.

After completing the program, the athletes demonstrated significant improvement from baseline for the Balance Error Scoring System single-leg stance on foam and for the Foot and Ankle Ability Measure global score.

“These tasks may have transference to athletic activities, but more research is needed,” said Kevin Mooney, a doctoral student in physical therapy at Bellarmine, who presented the findings in February at the Combined Sections Meeting of the American Physical Therapy Association.

Source:

Mooney K, Zuber C, Klenke J, et al. A neuromuscular balance training program for female high school basketball athletes to prevent ankle sprains. J Orthop Sports Phys Ther 2015;45(1):A55-A56.

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