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Y- BALANCE TEST SCORE COMPARISON BETWEEN PRE-SEASON AND IN-SEASON IN YOUTH ATHLETES
  1. Natalia Bittencourt1,
  2. Marcela Leite1,
  3. Leandro Garcia1,
  4. Luciana Mendonça2,
  5. Ana Carolina Bithencourt1,
  6. Gabriela Gonçalves1
  1. 1Minas Tenis Clube, Belo Horizonte, Brazil
  2. 2Universidade Federal do Vale do Jequitinhonha e Mucuri, Diamantina, Brazil

    Abstract

    Background The Y-balance test has been used clinically to assess neuromuscular control deficits and a composite score of <94% and anterior asymmetry of >4 cm have been associated with lower limb injuries in basketball athletes.

    Objective To compare Y-test performance during the pre-season to in-season in injury-free athletes.

    Design Prospective study.

    Setting Brazilian sports club, mixed sports.

    Patients (or Participants) 182 injury-free youth athletes (145 male and 37 female) from judo, volleyball, basketball, gymnastics and indoor soccer were assessed (age 14.3±2.8; height 168±19 cm, body mass 60±18 kg).

    Assessment of Risk Factors The Y-test was assessed during the pre-season (February) and in-season (June). Athletes practiced 6 trials on each leg prior to formal testing. While maintaining single-leg stance, they were asked to reach with the free limb in the anterior, posteromedial, and posterolateral directions.

    Main Outcome Measurements Y-test performance was calculated as the composite score (sum of the three reach distances, divided by 3 times limb length, then multiplied by 100). Anterior distance asymmetry was calculated as the difference between the dominant limb (DL) and non-dominant limb (NDL) values. Both measures were compared between pre- and in-season.

    Results The pre-season average composite score for DL was 87.5% and for NDL 87.8%, while the average anterior distance asymmetry was 3.7 cm. During in-season, the average composite score was 85.4% for DL and NDL, and the anterior distance asymmetry was 3.0 cm. T-tests revealed statistically significant differences for the composite score (p<0.001) and for anterior distance asymmetry (p=0.01).

    Conclusions Athletes showed poorer composite score values during in-season compared to pre-season and the values were below the risk cut-off point reported in the literature. This group did not present substantial anterior distance asymmetry.

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