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Vibration training improves balance in unstable ankles

Cloak, Ross and Nevill, Alan M. and Clarke, F. and Day, Stephen H. and Wyon, Matthew A. (2010) Vibration training improves balance in unstable ankles. International Journal of Sports Medicine, 31 (12). pp. 894-900. ISSN 1439-3964

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Functional ankle instability (FAI) is a common condition following ankle injury characterised by increased risk of injury. Ankle sprains are a common acute form of injury suffered in dancing and loss of balance can affect not only risk of injury risk but also performance aesthetics. Whole body vibration training (WBVT) is a new rehabilitation method that has been linked with improving balance and muscle function. 38 female dancers with self reported unilateral FAI were randomly assigned in 2 groups; WBVT and Control. Absolute centre of mass (COM) distribution during single leg stance, SEBT normalised research distances and Peroneus longus mean power frequency (fmed) where measured pre and post 6-week intervention. There was a significant improvement in COM distribution over the 6 weeks from 1.05±0.57 to 0.33±0.42 cm2 (P<0.05), and 4 of the 8 planes of direction in the SEBT Ant, Antlat, Med and Antmed from 77.5±7.1 to 84.1±5.8% (P<0.05) compared to control groups during the course of the 6 week training intervention. There was no evidence of improvement in peroneus longus (fmed) over time (P=0.915) in either group. WBVT improved static balance and SEBT scores amongst dancers exhibiting ankle instability but did not affect peroneus longus muscle fatigue.

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