By Dr. Andrew Ullo (Chiropractor)
Hip and groin injuries account for 10-15% of all soccer related injuries and 11-16% of the time-loss injuries in soccer. Unfortunately, a small number of these injuries can become chronic and lead to early retirement. Range of motion (ROM) has been identified as a risk factor for groin pain. However, the conclusions are disagreeing and the role of ROM in soccer and hip and groin pain remains uncertain.
One recent study has demonstrated that a decreased hip ROM is a risk factor for hip and groin pain in soccer. In this study they assessed the severity of hip and groin symptoms using the Copenhagen Hip and Groin Outcome Score (HAGOS), a validated patient-reported outcome measure for young active patients with hip and/or groin pain.
They looked at 60 professional soccer players from the first team of 2 clubs from the Dutch premier professional league during their pre-season for Hip Range of Motion and HAGOS scores, also plain radiographs for CAM identification.
A cam deformity is the presence of an aspherical femoral head and has been demonstrated to be associated with decreased internal rotation of the hip joint and with hip and groin pain.
Interestingly the range of motion in the hips on the side where players reported any current hip or groin pain was not different from that in players without, irrespective of the presence of a cam deformity. Also, players with Hip and Groin pain in the previous season showed lower internal rotation and total rotation of their hips.
The authors concluded that decreased Hip ROM in professional soccer players is associated with more hip and groin related symptoms and with some previous injuries. These results show the importance of doing what you can to keep your hips as mobile as possible. Getting your Chiropractor to help improve the range of motion could be a great starting point, along with doing some yoga or mobility stretches.
Tak Igor (2015), Hip Range of Motion Is Lower in Professional Soccer Players With Hip and Groin Symptoms or Previous Injuries, Independent of Cam Deformities. Am J Sports Med