Background Groin pain is a widespread problem in football. Not only in the professional leagues, even the amateur and the youth sector have to handle it. Consistently, there are training and game absenteeism due to existing pain in this area.
Objective The aim was to describe the preventive effect of a separate training of the hip joint adductors on groin pain in order to reduce their prevalence.
Design Randomized prospective intervention study.
Setting Twelve amateur football teams were grouped and supervised during a period of six months (2 preparation, 4 first half of the season).
Patients (or Participants) Twelve amateur football teams participated (6 teams, 121 players, aged 25±8 yrs, in the intervention group, 6 teams, 115 players, aged 26±5 yrs, in the control group)
Interventions (or Assessment of Risk Factors) The intervention group worked on three targeted exercises to strengthen the adductors, performed said exercise three times a week during their preiod and once a week during their season (3x15 reps, 30’). The content included stabilization exercises with their own body weight and a ‘Doiserband’ as an additive.
Main Outcome Measurements The prevalence of groin pain was recorded weekly over a period of 16 weeks during the competition phase per VAS and a short questionnaire. The weekly activity of each player was also recorded.
Results The average prevalence of groin pain was 12.5% (95% CI. 11,3% to 13,7%) in the intervention group and 20.3% (95% Cl. 29,0% bis 21,6%) in the control group. This result is a 41% lower risk for the occurrence of groin pain, if separate exercises for strengthening would be performed additionally.
Conclusions It becomes apparent that a strengthening training of the adductors can reduces the prevalence of groin pain in the observed sample. Therefore, a targeted and regular training program is recommended to strengthen the adductors, and to preventively reduce the risk of training and competition failures.