The Association of Joint Power Kinetic Variables with Running Injuries: A Case-Control Study.
Dewald M, Dalland J, Stockland J.
Background: There is conflicting data on which kinetic variables are important to consider with running injuries. Furthermore, less is understood regarding differences in these variables when considering demographics such as age, sex, weight, and running speed. The primary question was what joint power kinetic variables were different between non-injured and injured runners.
Purpose: The purpose of this study was to identify if there were differences in joint power kinetic variables between non-injured runners and injured runners.
Study Design: Case-Control Study
Methods: Kinetic data were collected on 122 runners (26 non-injured and 96 injured) over three years with a Bertec force plated treadmill and Qualisys 3D motion capture. The subjects were considered eligible if they self-identified themselves as runners or had running as a key component of their activity. The subjects ran at a comfortable, self-selected pace while two 10-second trials of recordings were used to calculate the means of peak power generated at the hips, knees, and ankles of each gait cycle. Foot strike was categorized by kinematic data. Two sample T-tests were used to compare peak power variables at the hips, knees, and ankles between non-injured and injured runners. Logistic regression analyses examined how a combination of demographics and peak power variables were associated with injuries.
Results: No peak power variable at the hip, knee, or ankle was significantly different between injured and non-injured runners (p=0.07-0.87). However, higher hip power absorbed was found to be protective against injuries (odds ratio, .16; 95% CI .025-.88) when considering demographics using a logistic regression model including sex, foot strike, BMI, speed, age, and power variables from the hip, knee, and ankle. The area under the ROC curve was .74, which is acceptable discrimination.
Conclusion: When controlling for age, sex, BMI, foot strike, and speed; higher hip power absorbed was found to be protective against injury. This could be due to the hip muscles’ unique role in absorbing force during early stance phase.
Level of Evidence: 3b