Injury Prevention Exercises for Reduced Incidence of Injuries in Combat Soldiers

Nili Steinberg, Shelly Bar-Sela, Uria Moran, Michal Pantanowitz, Gordon Waddington, Roger Adams, Shani Svorai Band, Shany Funk

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

ABSTRACT: Steinberg, N, Bar-Sela, S, Moran, U, Pantanowitz, M, Waddington, G, Adams, R, Band, SS, and Funk, S. Injury prevention exercises for reduced incidence of injuries in combat soldiers. J Strength Cond Res 35(11): 3128-3138, 2021-The aim of this study was to determine the influence of an "all-cause injury" prevention program, focused on static-to-dynamic transitions, on injury prevalence in a military commanders course. Two cohorts of male infantry commanders were recruited (intervention [INT group], n = 196 and controls [CO group], n = 169) and tracked by a physiotherapist, who recorded any injuries that occurred during the 14-week course. Soldiers were tested precourse, midcourse, and postcourse for anthropometrics, proprioception ability, and dynamic postural balance (DPB). The INT group performed injury prevention exercises for 5 minutes, 3 times a week, and the CO group continued with their routine physical fitness sessions. The prevalence of injuries reported to the physiotherapist during the course was significantly lower for the INT group compared with the CO group (14.8 and 34.3%, respectively, p < 0.001). Similarly, rates of injury in the INT group were significantly lower than in the CO group (p < 0.001; hazard = 2.53, 95% confidence interval = 1.62-3.95). Precourse proprioception ability was significantly lower in those that became injured during the commanders course, irrespective of the group. Likewise, for DPB parameters, the injured subjects in both groups had significantly lower precourse scores than the noninjured subjects. From pretesting to midtesting, the injured soldiers in the INT group improved their ability up to the level of the noninjured subjects. A reduced prevalence of injuries was found for soldiers who completed the injury prevention program. Because the subjects soldiers injured on the course had reduced somatosensory abilities at the outset, and as these abilities can be improved by static-to-dynamic exercises, identifying at-risk soldiers and providing them with appropriate strategies for improvement beforehand is indicated.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3128-3138
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Strength and Conditioning Research
Volume35
Issue number11
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2021

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