Proprioceptive abilities improve in expert skiers and snowboarders from early-season to mid-season

Tracey J Dickson, Jeremy Witchalls, F. Anne Terwiel, Rachel Jaros, Gordon Waddington, Braden McGrath

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


To determine whether the proprioceptive ability of advanced and expert snowsport participants increased with time on-snow, and whether gender, age, snowsport discipline and/or previous ankle injury were factors in proprioceptive ability at the start of the winter snow season (T1, n = 80) compared to mid- season (T2, n = 39).

Observational study

Participants completed a questionnaire at T1, and proprioception was measured at T1 and T2 by the active movement extent discrimination apparatus (AMEDA), which tests lower limb proprioception.

At T1 there was no significant difference between the proprioception scores of the two cohorts of advanced and expert snowsport participants, between females and males, younger and older age groups, nor between alpine skiers and snowboarders. At T2, after a minimum of 5 weeks on-snow, the whole group had improved their proprioception by 0.04 as measured by the AMEDA. Groups undertaking different snowsport disciplines achieved different gains across the season, with minimal change of 0.02 in skiers, while snowboarders and mixed ski/snowboard participants gained 0.05 and 0.06 (η2 .63 and 0.47 respectively). Males, females, instructors and elite youth participants all improved their proprioception by mid-season (η2 0.29−0.46).

Amongst an established group of snowsports participants, lower limb proprioception is a consistent skill that is equally well developed in all cohorts. Several weeks of regular snowsport exposure improves this proprioceptive acuity amongst snowboarders, and those who mix snowboarding with skiing. Exposure to a prolonged period of snowsport improves proprioception, with benefits to neuromuscular control mechanisms.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1021-1025
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Science and Medicine in Sport
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2021


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