Sports Medicine Research: In the Lab & In the Field: Say it Again: Injury Prevention Programs WORK!!!! (Sports Med Res)
Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Say it Again: Injury Prevention Programs WORK!!!!

Efficacy of the FIFA 11+ Injury Prevention Program in Collegiate Male Soccer Player

Silvers-Granelli H, Mandelbaum B, Adeniji O, Insler S, Bizzini M, Pohlig R, Junge A, Snyder-Mackler L, & Dvorak J. Am J Sports Med. Published Online First: September 16, 2015; DOI: 10.1177/0363546515602009

Take Home Message: The FIFA11+ program was effective at reducing injuries in Division I and II collegiate male soccer players.  Compliance may be key, as those with the highest compliance had the lowest injury rates.

Soccer is a popular sport worldwide and athletes in soccer have a high risk for lower extremity injuries.  Injury prevention programs have been designed and implemented in a variety of populations in an attempt to reduce the number of injuries.  Sports Med Res has a few posts on the FIFA11+ program, which was designed to reduce injuries and improve performance specifically within a soccer population.  The authors of this study investigated the effectiveness and compliance to the FIFA11+ program in injury reduction among NCAA Division I and II collegiate male soccer players.  The authors randomized 65 teams but 4 teams assigned to the FIFA11+ program failed to complete the study. Therefore, 61 teams completed the study in the FIFA11+ group (27 teams / 675 players) or the control group (34 teams / 850 players). The FIFA11+ teams received instructional videos and documentation that described how to implement the FIFA11+ program into pre-practice warmups at least 3 times per week.  Athletic trainers with the teams reported any injuries (i.e., upper body or lower body) and exposures into a centralized database.  The FIFA11+ group had 46% less injuries per team than the control group.  Overall, the authors found moderate compliance to the FIFA11+ program and a relationship between compliance and injury rates, which suggested that higher compliance is related to less injuries. 

This is another research study that clearly demonstrates the effectiveness of the FIFA11+ program.  This is more evidence as to why we should be using some type of injury prevention program with our teams.  These findings agree with previous reports that compliance is related to injury rates, with higher compliance being related to lower injury rates.  The authors conducted this study during a competitive season and found positive results.  It would be interesting to see if there is a carryover effect to the off-season, or if it is as effective if initiated in the off-season and continued through the competitive season.  A previous post on the FIFA11+ program demonstrated that coaches can positively influence compliance to the program.  As clinicians, we should possibly focus our efforts on educating coaches as to the tremendous value of implementing an injury prevention program like the FIFA11+.  We can explain to coaches that the FIFA11+ program can reduce the risk of injuries and improve functional performance.  Finally, since coaches can positively influence athlete compliance to the FIFA11+, this means that they can help us (as clinicians) in our injury prevention efforts and we need to get them invested in these efforts. 

Questions for Discussion:  If you have an injury prevention program at your school, how is it going? If you don’t have an injury prevention program at your school, what is preventing these programs from being implemented?

Written by: Nicole Cattano
Reviewed by: Jeffrey Driban

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Silvers-Granelli, H., Mandelbaum, B., Adeniji, O., Insler, S., Bizzini, M., Pohlig, R., Junge, A., Snyder-Mackler, L., & Dvorak, J. (2015). Efficacy of the FIFA 11+ Injury Prevention Program in the Collegiate Male Soccer Player The American Journal of Sports Medicine DOI: 10.1177/0363546515602009

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