Background: The injury rate in soccer is high, and effective injury prevention methods are needed.
Purpose: To test the effect of a video-based awareness program on the incidence of acute injuries in soccer.
Study design: Randomized control trial; Level of evidence, 1.
Methods: Participants were elite male soccer players from the top 2 divisions in Iceland. Fifteen of 20 teams completed the study: 7 intervention teams (127 players) and 8 control teams (144 players) chosen by random. Just before the start of the 2000 soccer season, the intervention teams were visited with an intervention program. The program included a 15-minute presentation with information on the injury risk of playing elite soccer, typical injuries, and their mechanisms. Then the players worked together in pairs and analyzed video sequences to develop preventive strategies. The 12 video sequences were selected from the previous Icelandic soccer season, representing 3 typical injury mechanisms that accounted for more than half of all incidents recorded. During the season, team physical therapists prospectively recorded all acute injuries, and coaches recorded training exposure on a special form. Injury incidence was compared between groups and between the 1999 and 2000 seasons for teams that participated in both seasons.
Results: No difference was observed in injury incidence between the intervention (6.6 +/- 0.7 injuries per 1000 player hours) and control groups (6.6 +/- 0.7 injuries per 1000 player hours). Furthermore, there was no difference in injury location or type.
Conclusion: The video-based injury awareness program showed no effect on injury rate.