Background. Despite recent evidence supporting the use of neuromuscular training to reduce anterior cruciate ligament injury risk, female athletes continue to show an increased anterior cruciate ligament injury rate in collegiate basketball and soccer when compared to males. The purpose of the current study was to identify gender and task differences in measures that may increase the risk of anterior cruciate ligament injury in female basketball and soccer athletes. Methods. Eleven female and 11 male collegiate basketball and soccer athletes were height (female mean 176 (SD 8 cm), male mean 176 (SD 8 cm)) and weight (female mean 73 (SD 7 kg), male mean 74 (SD 6 kg)) matched. Three-dimensional motion analysis was used to calculate differences in total coronal plane angular joint excursion (maximum-minimum) between male and female athletes when performing a series of medially and laterally directed drop landings. Findings. Female athletes demonstrated increased total coronal plane excursion for the hip, knee and ankle (P < 0.05) during the medial drop landing. During the lateral drop landing females displayed increased excursion at the hip and knee. When comparing tasks, the lateral drop landing resulted in greater coronal plane excursion at the hip (P < 0.05) while the knee showed no differences between movements. In contrast, females demonstrated increased ankle excursion during the medial drop task (P < 0.05). Interpretation. Female athletes demonstrate increased lower extremity coronal plane excursion when performing single leg drop landing in both the medial and lateral direction when compared to height/weight matched male athletes. This increased coronal plane oscillation of lower extremity joints may be related to the increased risk of anterior cruciate ligament injury for female basketball and soccer athletes.
- ACL injury
- Gender differences
- Valgus knee
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine