Available at: https://digitalcommons.calpoly.edu/theses/2444
Date of Award
MS in Biomedical Engineering
College of Engineering
Michael D. Whitt
College of Engineering
INTRODUCTION: An increase in participation in females sports has created an increase of female athletes at risk for injuring their Anterior Cruciate Ligament(ACL)[12,21,29,44]. Traditional jumping sports have the highest rate of non contact ACL injuries, due to the use of movements of cutting, pivoting and landing on one foot[5,8,32,33,38]. ACL injuries can also be attributed to neuromuscular deficits such as the ‘Ligament Dominance Theory’, ‘Quadricep Dominance Theory’, ‘Trunk Dominance Theory’ and the ‘Leg Dominance Theory’[24,33]. The neuromuscular deficits are muscle strength, power or activation patterns that can cause an individual to have an increased risk of ACL injury. Female traditional jumping sport athletes have been associated with being at a higher risk of ACL injury than their male counterparts due to anatomical, hormonal and neuromuscular differences[2,8,24,28,32,37,38,44,47]. However, female dancers trained with ballet have a lower risk of ACL injury than their female athlete counterparts, but also have a similar ACL injury to their male dancing counterparts [28,37,45,47].
METHODS: This study analyzed six papers that compared the lower body biomechanics of female traditional jumping sport athletes to female dancers trained in ballet. The results of the measurement of this study will be placed into a chart to compare the results of each study to each other, to confirm the results of the comparison between the two populations. The next part of this study will examine unused turnout angle data collected from a previous thesis performed by Ashley Tornio. The data was taken from 20 participants, 15 female traditional jumping sport athletes and 5 female dancers trained in ballet. The averages of these two groups will be compared using an f test to determine differences in the turnout capabilities of each group.
RESULTS: The results of the data comparison found only six comparable measurements between the 6 papers. The papers were in agreement that female traditional jumping sport athlete had greater hip adduction moments and trunk forward flexion than female dancers trained in ballet. The papers were also in agreement that there was no statistically significant difference in the knee stiffness between the two populations. There was no consensus for the results of knee valgus angle, knee rotation, muscle activation or leg stiffness between the six papers. For the turnout angle f test, female traditional jumping sport athletes had an average turnout angle of 120.5 degrees and the female dancers trained in ballet had an average turnout angle of 141.2 degrees. It was found that the there was no statistically significant difference between the two populations at the 95% confidence level. However, there was a statistically significant difference between the two populations average turnout at a reduced confidence level of 80%. The
DISCUSSION: The limiting number of studies which compare female traditional jumping sport athletes and female dancers trained in ballet, were unable to form consensus on the difference between the biomechanics of each group during a landing task. The turnout angle data was also limited in the number of participants and a valid conclusion was unable to be made determining the ability to use the turnout angle as an indicator for risk of ACL injury. There needs to be continued research on the comparison of the female traditional jumping sport athletes and female dancers trained in ballet to determine the biomechanical advantages female dancers have for protection of the ACL.