By P.K. Daniel
Older elite male soccer players sustain significantly more triceps surae injuries than do their younger counterparts, and could benefit from targeted training to prevent such injuries, according to a study epublished in February by Knee Surgery, Sports Traumatology, Arthroscopy.
Researchers from the Stockholm Sports Trauma Research Center in Sweden analyzed 145 muscle injuries sustained by members of a Swedish soccer team between 2007 and 2012. Injury localization to the tendon or muscle, hematoma size, and the affected muscle group were assessed using ultrasound.
When players aged 23 years or younger were compared with those older than 23 years, there was no difference between the two age groups in injury distribution to muscles or tendons or hematoma size. However, the older players experienced significantly more injuries to the triceps surae than the younger players.
The findings suggest clinicians who work with elite soccer players should pay attention to triceps surae muscle function in older players and identify players who may benefit from a targeted injury prevention program, the authors wrote.
Svensson K, Alricsson M, Karnebäck G, et al. Muscle injuries of the lower extremity: a comparison between young and old male elite soccer players. Knee Surg Sports Traumatol Arthrosc 2015 Feb 11. [Epub ahead of print]