Background: Plyometric training is a widely used method to improve performance in healthy athletes. It is highly recommended in the late stage of rehabilitation of many lower limb injuries. However, its effects on muscle strength and function in management of lateral ankle sprain have not been reported. Therefore, the objective of the current study was to determine the effects of plyometric training versus resistive exercises on muscle strength and function following acute lateral ankle sprain.
Materials and methods: Twenty-two athletes (aged from 20 to 35 years) of both sexes with grade I or II unilateral inversion ankle sprain participated in the study (at least 3 weeks after acute injury). They were randomly assigned to two groups. The first group received plyometric training, whereas the second one received resistive training for 6 weeks. Isokinetic peak torque/body weight for invertors and evertors at 30 degrees/s and 120 degrees/s and functional tests were assessed before and after training.
Results: Both plyometric and resistive training improve isokinetic evertor and invertor peak torques and functional performance of athletes p < 0.05. There were no significant differences between groups concerning peak torque/body weight for invertors and evertors at both speeds measured p > 0.05. The functional test measures of the plyometric group were significantly higher than that of resistive group.
Conclusion: Plyometrics were more effective than resistive exercises in improving functional performance of athletes after lateral ankle sprain.