Do niggles matter? – Increased injury risk following physical complaints in football (soccer)

Review written by Adam Johnson info

Key Points

  • There is an up to six-fold increase in the risk of injury when a semi-professional footballer reports a physical complaint in the prior week.
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BACKGROUND & OBJECTIVE

In order to implement effective injury prevention strategies, it is important to truly understand the patterns of injury-related time loss within the cohort as well as the potential contributing factors. Current injury surveillance literature (1) records only time loss related complaints.

The objective of this study was to compare the prevalence and impact of all “physical complaints” in semi-professional football with a secondary aim of determining the relative risk of sustaining a time-loss injury within a week of reporting a non-time loss complaint.

In order to implement effective injury prevention strategies, it is important to understand the patterns of injury within the athlete cohort.
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This study highlights the importance of having a subjective component to our screening protocols with this self-reported questionnaire showing positive results in relation to identifying increased injury risk.

METHODS

Players from 25 teams at 10 separate semi-professional soccer clubs within the Australian second and third tiers were recruited for the study. Data relating to time loss (TL) injuries and individual exposure was collected by an assigned medical professional for

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