Progressive resistance (strength) training has become the basis of year-round training programs for many sports. Training effects including muscle fiber hypertrophy, improved muscle fiber recruitment, increased strength of tendons and ligaments, and increased bone density are often equated with improved resistance to physical injury on the playing field. However, there is little research to document such a relationship. This study recorded injury rate and classification in a men's college soccer team over a 4-yr period. The yearly practice and game exposures for each athlete were also recorded. During the first 2 years none of the participants were involved in any strength training regimen. For Years 3 and 4 all participants were placed on a year-round strength training program. The incidence of injuries decreased following strength training, from 15.15 to 7.99 per 1,000 exposures. Changes in injury classification were also noted.
(C) 1996 National Strength and Conditioning Association