Physical load tolerance differs between kicking and support limbs in Australian footballers
Australian Strength and Conditioning Association
Faculty of Health, Engineering and Science
School of Exercise and Health Sciences/Centre for Exercise and Sports Science Research
Australian Footballers are routinely exposed to differential stresses under training and competitive contexts. Physical loads transmitted through the lower-body are particularly frequent and volatile due to the multifarious activities inherent within elite performance, such as running, jumping, kicking and changing direction. These repetitious asymmetrical activities have been shown to generate asymmetrical hypertrophic responses in muscle (1-4); however, it is not yet known whether similar long-term adaptations are evident in hard-tissue structures. While it is logical to expect a level of lateral dominance in the lower limbs of elite Australian Footballers on the basis of preferential function during sport participation (4-6), this has yet to be quantified. It is therefore not yet known whether developmental laterality exists; or whether load tolerance capability (fracture load) differs between hard-tissue structures of the lower limbs. The purpose of this study is to quantify tibial fracture load and stress-strain indices of an elite Australian Football cohort.