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Preseason and Midseason Balance Ability of Professional Australian Footballers

Lippincott Williams and Wilkins
Publication Date
  • Centre For Ageing
  • Rehabilitation
  • Exercise & Sport Science (Cares)
  • 1106 Human Movement And Sports Science
  • 970106 Expanding Knowledge In The Biological Sciences


Balance ability has been shown to be important for sports performance and injury prevention. It is unclear whether balance ability changes due to sports participation and regular training without specific balance training. It has not been shown whether certain sports such as the various football codes that often involve single limb stance and balance as part of kicking, running, rapid changes of direction, jumping, and landing actually influence balance ability. The aim of this study was to determine whether there was a difference in balance ability measured at preseason and during the competitive season for elite footballer. Twenty-eight professional Australian footballers who did not undertake any specific balance training took part in this study. Postural sway from single limb balance on a force platform was measured for both limbs 1 week before the start and midway through a 22-week competitive season. The subjects were required to step onto a balance mat on top of the force platform and maintain balance for 20 seconds. The maximum sway of the center of pressure in the mediolateral direction was used as the balance score. It was found that there was not a significant difference in the balance ability measurement at the start and during the competitive season. Sports participation and regular training did not influence balance ability in this cohort of athletes.

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