BACKGROUND & OBJECTIVE
Only 65% of individuals with anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction (ACLR) return back to their pre-injury level of sporting participation after surgery, highlighting the need to consider other potential factors that can impede recovery. Psychological readiness (readiness of an individual to return to sport based on their emotions, confidence and risk appraisal of the situation) has been identified as one key factor that should be assessed in order for a successful return to sport. This study aimed to examine changes in psychological readiness and functional measures after partaking in advanced group training for individuals with ACLR.
This study retrospectively identified participants who had primary, unilateral ACLR who were enrolled in an advanced group training program. The group training consisted of two training sessions per week (two hours/session) that lasted for 5 weeks. Training sessions consisted of plyometric, strengthening, and agility exercises. Participants were assessed pre and post-intervention. Outcomes included were psychological readiness assessed with the ACL-Return to Sport after Injury Scale (ACL-RSI) and functional performance measured by a battery of single leg hop tests (single leg hop for distance, triple hop for distance, triple crossover hop for distance, 6-m timed hop). They also grouped participants into “ready” or “not ready” to return to sport (RTS). The criteria for being grouped into ready to RTS was ACL-RSI scores greater than 56/100 (lower threshold) or 75/100 (higher threshold) and lower limb symmetry index (LSI) of at least 90% when combining all hop scores.
ACL-RSI scores increased by an average of 17.8 points (effect size = 1.04) and average hop test symmetry scores increased by 88.3%-91.2% to 92.6%-94.7% (effect size = 0.36-0.59) post-intervention, indicating a greater change in ACL-RSI scores than functional performance. There