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Title: LOW BACK PAIN ON ELITE VOLEEYBALL PLAYERS – Identification of biomorphological risk factors
Authors: Costa e Silva, Lara
Keywords: Low back pain
Issue Date: 2010
Abstract: Introduction: According to several authors, low back pain is in volleyball is a common phenomenon which must be understood. Aim: To identify and determine the influence of biomorphological risk factors on low back pain occurrences, of volleyball professional players who have at least 2 weekly training sessions of 2 hours each, and competed on regional, district and national championships. Methods: A self-answered questionnaire was distributed to 301 athletes of the Autonomous Region of Madeira in order to determine the prevalence of the injury and to collect information about its prevalence pattern. Due to convenience reasons, 124 athletes with (41) and without (83) low back pain were measured. A large number of anthropometric measures were collected according to the International Society for the Advancement of Kinanthropometry procedures (1). The data were processed with a SPSS program. Descriptive statistics was performed for each sex and for different age groups (15-16 and above 18 years). A multifactorial logistic analysis was used to evaluate the influence of biomorphological risk factors. The statistic probability was set to p≤.05. Results: The annual prevalence (2005) of low back pain was of 17.2%. The most affected athletes were the above 18 years subgroup, in which the prevalence values reached 30.6%. Indirect trauma was the most mentioned cause for the complaints; the serve and spike were the technical gestures pointed out as being at the origin of the pain. The injuries occurred mainly during the training sessions having had spontaneous resolution (benign). The risk factors for low back pain occurrence found by logistic multifactorial analisys were: age, years of practice and higher values of the abdominal and biceps skinfold. For the female sample, age (O.R. = 1,278 to a p<0,05) and the abdominal skinfold (O.R. = 1,222 to a p<0,05) were considered as a risk factors. For the male sample age revealed to be the most important risk factor (O.R. = 1,419 to a p<0,05). Biceps skinfold was considered as a risk factor in the 15/16 year old range (O.R. = 1,613 to a p<0,05) and also in athletes with more than 18 years (O.R. = 1,184 to a p< 0,05). Discussion and Conclusions: The registered models were, in their majority, in accordance with the literature. Low back pain increases with age in general, and in volleyball players in particular. In Silva’s study (2), the age ranges between 25-29 years old and 30-34 years old were the most affected. Also Lund (3) and Lindner (4) stated that the prevalence in older athletes is higher and that the injury risk increases with age, especially in cases of overuse injuries such as tendinitis and back problems. Salminem (5) also refers that the occurrence increases with age as well as recurrence and severity. Abdominal skinfold is also a risk factor for the women group. Several investigators as Toda (6), Han (7) and Lean (8) have stated that women with higher values of abdominal fat have more low back pain. Hicks (9) also came to the conclusion that individuals with a higher fat percentage on the torso have more tendency to “trigger” low back pain. Biceps skinfold was a risk factor for the 15/16 year old range group. We did not find an explanation for this particular result. In conclusion the excess of fat mass on the torso increases the risk for low back pain.
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