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. 2017 Jul;52(7):643-648.
doi: 10.4085/1062-6050-52.3.12. Epub 2017 Apr 24.

Lower Limb and Trunk Biomechanics After Fatigue in Competitive Female Irish Dancers

Free PMC article

Lower Limb and Trunk Biomechanics After Fatigue in Competitive Female Irish Dancers

Catherine Y Wild et al. J Athl Train. .
Free PMC article


Context: Because of the increasing popularity of participation in Irish dance, the incidence of lower limb injuries is high among this competitive population.

Objective: To investigate the effects of fatigue on the peak lower limb and trunk angles as well as the peak lower limb joint forces and moments of competitive female Irish dancers during the performance of a dance-specific single-limb landing.

Design: Cross-sectional study.

Setting: Laboratory.

Patients or other participants: Fourteen healthy, female, competitive Irish dancers (age = 19.4 ± 3.7 years, height = 165.3 ± 5.9 cm, mass = 57.9 ± 8.2 kg).

Intervention(s): Participants performed an Irish dance-specific leap before and after a dance-specific fatigue protocol. During each landing movement, 3-dimensional lower limb kinematics (250 Hz) and ground reaction forces (1000 Hz) were collected. Paired t tests were performed to determine the differences (P ≤ .05) in lower limb and trunk biomechanics prefatigue and postfatigue.

Main outcome measure(s): Peak lower limb and trunk angles as well as peak lower limb joint reaction forces and external moments.

Results: Compared with the prefatigue trials, dancers landed with reduced ankle plantar flexion (P = .003) and hip external rotation (P = .007) and increased hip-adduction alignment (P = .034) postfatigue. Dancers displayed greater anterior shear (P = .003) and compressive (P = .024) forces at the ankle and greater external knee-flexion moments (P = .024) during the postfatigue compared with the prefatigue landing trials.

Conclusions: When fatigued, dancers displayed a decline in landing performance in terms of aesthetics as well as increased ankle- and knee-joint loading, potentially exposing them to a greater risk of injuries.

Keywords: jumping; kinematics; kinetics; landing; technique.


Jump execution of a leap over. A, On takeoff, the leading limb (right) is flexed at the hip with the knee extended and ankle plantar flexed. B, The trailing limb (left) moves into slight hip flexion, full knee flexion, and full plantar flexion at the ankle during the flight phase. C, Initial contact whereby dancers land on toe on their leading limb within the confines of the force platform. D, The time just before toe-off of the leading limb.

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