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Implementation of a neuromuscular training programme in female adolescent football: 3-year follow-up study after a randomised controlled trial
  1. Hanna Lindblom1,
  2. Markus Waldén2,
  3. Siw Carlfjord2,
  4. Martin Hägglund1
  1. 1Division of Physiotherapy, Department of Medical and Health Sciences, Linköping University, Linköping, Sweden
  2. 2Division of Community Medicine, Department of Medical and Health Sciences, Linköping University, Linköping, Sweden
  1. Correspondence to Hanna Lindblom, Division of Physiotherapy, Department of Medical and Health Sciences, Linköping University, 581 83 Linköping, Sweden; hanna.lindblom{at}liu.se

Abstract

Background Neuromuscular training (NMT) has been shown to reduce anterior cruciate ligament injury rates in highly structured clinical trials. However, there is a paucity of studies that evaluate implementation of NMT programmes in sports.

Aim To evaluate the implementation of an NMT programme in female adolescent football 3 years after a randomised controlled trial (RCT).

Methods Cross-sectional follow-up after an RCT using the Reach, Effectiveness, Adoption, Implementation, and Maintenance Sports Setting Matrix (RE-AIM SSM) framework. Questionnaires were sent to the Swedish Football Association (FA), to eight district FAs and coaches (n=303) that participated in the RCT in 2009, and coaches who did not participate in the RCT but were coaching female adolescent football teams during the 2012 season (n=496).

Results Response rates were 100% among the FAs, 57% among trial coaches and 36% among currently active coaches. The reach of the intervention was high, 99% of trial coaches (control group) and 91% of current coaches were familiar with the programme. The adoption rate was 74% among current coaches, but programme modifications were common among coaches. No district FA had formal policies regarding implementation, and 87% of current coaches reported no club routines for programme use. Maintenance was fairly high; 82% of trial coaches from the intervention group and 68% from the control group still used the programme.

Conclusions Reach and adoption of the programme was high among coaches. However, this study identified low programme fidelity and lack of formal policies for its implementation and use in clubs and district FAs.

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