Stretching: The Truth
When Duane Knudson, a professor of kinesiology at California State University, Chico, looks around campus at athletes warming up before practice, he sees one dangerous mistake after another. “They’re stretching, touching their toes. . . . ” He sighs. “It’s discouraging.”
The 11 – FIFA's injury prevention programme
ACL Injury Prevention
You have probably already made this painful experience yourself: Playing football carries a risk of injury. But the good news is: Scientific studies have shown that the incidence of football injuries can be reduced by targeted prevention programmes.
"The 11" is a simple, catchy and time-efficient preventive programme that comprises ten evidence-based or best-practice exercises and - as number 11 - the promotion of Fair Play. It requires no equipment other than a ball, and can be completed in 10 to 15 minutes. The programme is efficient as most of the exercises simultaneously train different aspects and can replace other exercises.
The exercises focus on specific training methods coaches might be familiar with: core stabilisation, eccentric training of thigh muscles, proprioceptive training, dynamic stabilisation and plyometrics with straight leg alignment. Proprioception is the ability to sense the position of your body, your limbs and their movements. Plyometrics is a type of exercise that uses explosive movements to develop muscular power.
You should perform "The 11" in every training session after warm-up and stretching of all the important muscle groups. To ensure their effect, you should perform the exercises as precisely as possible and follow their sequence on the poster. Before each match, you should go for a shortened version: exercises 4, 5, 8.
"The 11" was developed by FIFA's Medical Assessment and Research Centre (F-MARC) in cooperation with a group of international experts. What are your benefits when following the programme? You may improve your performance and suffer less injuries!
ACL Injury Prevention
The ACL Prevention Project training program was created by the Santa Monica Orthopaedic and Sports Medicine Foundation to decrease the number of ACL injuries in female soccer players. In the recent past there has been a significant increase in the number of injuries in female athletes, particularly among soccer players. Studies show that female soccer player's risk of an ACL injury is two to eight times that of men. Adding neuromuscular and proprioceptive exercises to the training regimen can reduce the number of ACL injuries by two to four fold.
ACL Injury Prevention Program (PEP) Overview
The ACL Injury Prevention Program is a highly specific 15-minute training session that replaces the traditional warm-up. It was developed by a team of physicians, physical therapists, athletic trainers and coaches. The program goal is to teach players strategies to avoid injury by:
Avoiding vulnerable positions
Including plyometric exercises in training
Optimally the program should be performed at least 2-3 times per week during the season.
This program consists of a warm-up, stretching, strengthening, plyometrics, and sport specific agility training. It is important to use proper technique during jumping moves (jump straight up and down jumps without excessive side-to-side movement), and aim for soft landings