Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
ISSN: 1303 - 2968   
Ios-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Androit-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
from September 2014
©Journal of Sports Science and Medicine (2011) 10, 292 - 300

Research article
Effects of Combined Foot/Ankle Electromyostimulation and Resistance Training on the In-Shoe Plantar Pressure Patterns during Sprint in Young Athletes
François Fourchet , Sami Kuitunen, Olivier Girard, Adam J. Beard, Grégoire P. Millet
Author Information
ASPIRE, Academy for Sports Excellence, Doha, Qatar

François Fourchet
✉ ASPIRE, Academy for Sports Excellence, P.O. Box 22287, Doha, Qatar
Publish Date
Received: 28-10-2010
Accepted: 11-02-2011
Published (online): 01-06-2011
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Several studies have already reported that specific foot/ankle muscle reinforcement strategies induced strength and joint position sense performance enhancement. Nevertheless the effects of such protocols on sprint performance and plantar loading distribution have not been addressed yet. The objective of the study is to investigate the influence of a 5-wk foot/ankle strength training program on plantar loading characteristics during sprinting in adolescent males. Sixteen adolescent male athletes of a national training academy were randomly assigned to either a combined foot/ankle electromyostimulation and resistance training (FAST) or a control (C) group. FAST consisted of foot medial arch and extrinsic ankle muscles reinforcement exercises, whereas C maintained their usual training routine. Before and after training, in-shoe loading patterns were measured during 30-m running sprints using pressure sensitive insoles (right foot) and divided into nine regions for analysis. Although sprint times remained unchanged in both groups from pre- to post- training (3.90 ± 0.32 vs. 3.98 ± 0.46 s in FAST and 3.83 ± 0.42 vs. 3.81 ± 0.44 s in C), changes in force and pressure appeared from heel to forefoot between FAST and C. In FAST, mean pressure and force increased in the lateral heel area from pre- to post- training (67.1 ± 44.1 vs. 82.9 ± 28.6 kPa [p = 0.06]; 25.5 ± 17.8 vs. 34.1 ± 14.3 N [p = 0.05]) and did not change in the medial forefoot (151.0 ± 23.2 vs. 146.1 ± 30.0 kPa; 142.1 ± 29.4 vs. 136.0 ± 33.8; NS). Mean area increased in FAST under the lateral heel from pre- to post- (4.5 ± 1.3 vs. 5.7 ± 1.6 cm2 [p < 0.05]) and remained unchanged in C (5.5 ± 2.8 vs. 5.0 ± 3.0 cm2). FAST program induced significant promising lateral and unwanted posterior transfer of the plantar loads without affecting significantly sprinting performance.

Key words: Track and field, medial arch, reinforcement, injury prevention

           Key Points
  • We have evaluated the effects of a foot/ankle strength training program on sprint performance and on related plantar loading characteristics in teenage athletes, and this have not been examined previously.
  • Our results showed no significant pre- to post- changes in sprint performance.
  • This study revealed initially a lateral transfer and secondly a posterior transfer of the plantar loads after the foot/ankle strength training program.
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