In-season monitoring of hip and groin strength, health and function in elite youth soccer: Implementing an early detection and management strategy over two consecutive seasons Academic Article uri icon


  • OBJECTIVES:The primary purpose of this study was to describe an early detection and management strategy when monitoring in-season hip and groin strength, health and function in soccer. Secondly to compare pre-season to in-season test results. DESIGN:Longitudinal cohort study. METHODS:Twenty-seven elite male youth soccer players (age: 15.07±0.73years) volunteered to participate in the study. Monitoring tests included: adductor strength, adductor/abductor strength ratio and hip and groin outcome scores (HAGOS). Data were recorded at pre-season and at 22 monthly intervals in-season. Thresholds for alerts to initiate further investigations were defined as any of the following: adductor strength reductions >15%, adductor/abductor strength ratio <0.90, and HAGOS subscale scores <75 out of 100 in any of the six subscales. RESULTS:Overall, 105 alerts were detected involving 70% of players. Strength related alerts comprised 40% and remaining 60% of alerts were related to HAGOS. Hip adductor strength and adductor/abductor strength ratio were lowest at pre-season testing and had increased significantly by month two (p<0.01, mean difference 0.26, CI95%: 0.12, 0.41N/kg and p<0.01, mean difference 0.09, CI95%: 0.04, 0.13 respectively). HAGOS subscale scores were lowest at baseline with all, except Physical Activity, showing significant improvements at time-point one (p<0.01). Most (87%) time-loss were classified minimal or mild. CONCLUSIONS:In-season monitoring aimed at early detection and management of hip and groin strength, health and function appears promising. Hip and groin strength, health and function improved quickly from pre-season to in-season in a high-risk population for ongoing hip and groin problems.

publication date

  • 2018