Background Ankle taping has been widely used to prevent recurrent ankle sprain during dynamic tasks. However, it may alter joint stiffness result in an adverse effect on a shock absorption to the entire lower extremity kinetic chain during landing due to a restricted ankle joint.
Objective To investigate changes in lower extremity biomechanics with and without taping during drop landing (DL).
Design Case control study.
Patients (or Participants) A total of active 53 male college students with no history of lower extremity surgery or injury were participated.
Interventions Each participant performed eight drop landings (four before and four after ankle taping). Eight infrared-optical cameras system (Vicon Motion Systems Ltd. Oxford, UK) and force-plates (Bertec Corporation. Columbus, OH) were used to collect all kinematics and kinetics during DL.
Main Outcome Measurements Sagittal plane joint kinematics and kinetics were extracted between initial contact and maximum knee flexion angle. Cohen's D effect size (d) and 95% confidence interval (CI) were calculated to analyze size of difference.
Results Sagittal plane total excursion of the ankle was statistically decreased (d=1.01, CI:0.61∼1.42) but knee and hip were not changed after taping. Joint stiffness showed no significant changes at the ankle (d=−0.25, CI:−0.63∼0.13), knee (d=−0.11, CI:−0.49∼0.27), and hip (d=−0.12, 95% CI:−0.51∼0.26) after taping There were significant decrease in both eccentric work (d=−0.78, 95% CI:−1.18∼-0.39) and contribution to total work (d=0.58, CI:0.19∼0.97) at ankle while no changes observed in the knee and the hip.
Conclusions Even though ankle taping reduces ankle joint total excursion during DL and may impact on ankle stiffness, it does not alter proximal joint kinematics and stiffness. Reduced both eccentric work and%work at the ankle joint indicates possible changes in shock absorption mechanism during landing. Therefore, the clinicians may consider the importance of proximal joint movement strategy to attenuate shock during landing.