Perth Physiotherapy for Soccer Related Groin Injuries

If, like the rest of the world, you’ve been watching the FIFA World Cup 2014, you are probably in awe of the players agile and dynamic maneuvers. With these moves, however,  comes the inevitable list of injuries. FIFA lists the ankle, knee, hamstring and head as the most common sites for injury among soccer players. Bites to the shoulder were not included! 🙂 ( Whilst not mentioned on the FIFA site, groin injuries are also common. Our Perth physiotherapists can help with your injury prevention and rehabilitation program.

About Groin Injuries

A groin strain is an over-stretch, tear, or  total rupture of the muscle that extends from the pubic bone to the inner thigh. This muscle facilitates leg movement from an outside to an inside hip position. Initiation of the crossover step in soccer exemplifies the workings of the groin muscle. Pulled or strained groin  muscles trigger extreme pain, along with adverse performance consequences. Groin injuries don’t just affect your actions on the playing field: they can also distort your movements during your daily functional activities.

The Groin Pain/Weak Adductor Relationship

The results of a 2010 study published in the Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport indicate that groin pain prevails among young Australian football players, and that weak adductors (inner thigh muscles) are the culprits. Given that the adductors also support the medial portion of your knees, a probable correlation exists between knee injuries and weak adductors. In fact, adductor strength is so important that sports medicine experts suggest that coaches perform an adductor strength test to determine an athlete’s readiness for the field.

The Research Study

Injuries aside, adductor strength also plays a key role in physical function and performance, notes lead author Kristian Thorborg. To test this hypothesis, the physiotherapy team at the Sports Orthopaedic Research Center at the Copenhagen University Hospital recruited elite and sub-elite players from 40 teams.  In total, 28 soccer players with adductor-related groin pain and 16 soccer asymptomatic players participated in the study. The research team reported significant hip adduction strength deficits in soccer players with adductor-related groin pain, in comparison to the asymptomatic soccer players,

How Groin Injuries Occur

Inner thigh overuse, sudden muscular contraction, fast changes in direction, sprinting and landing from a jumps can trigger a groin injury.  Insufficient warm-up, faulty technique and blows to the groin area will exacerbate the pain and injury. Whilst all of these are possibilities, FIFA sports physiotherapist Mario Bizzini refers to  groin pain “The Bermuda Triangle of Sports Medicine?”  In a 2010 article featured in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, he notes:

“The groin, an anatomical region where diagnosis and symptoms are often confusing, may also represent a Bermuda triangle, for clinicians to disappear in vortices of suppositions and assumptions.”

In order to avoid these “vortices of suppositions an assumptions,” our sport physiotherapists at iphysioperth look at the big picture. Not only do we check your adduct strength: we check it in relation to your other body movements!

 For world-class physiotherapy in Perth call Happy Physio on (08) 9272 7359 now!