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An Examination of Ankle, Knee, and Hip Torque Production in Individuals With Chronic Ankle Instability

Gribble, Phillip A; Robinson, Richard H

The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: March 2009 - Volume 23 - Issue 2 - p 395-400
doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e31818efbb2
Original Research

Gribble, PA and Robinson, RH. An examination of ankle, knee, and hip torque production in individuals with chronic ankle instability. J Strength Cond Res 23(2): 395-400, 2009-There is some debate in the literature as to whether strength deficits exist at the ankle in individuals with chronic ankle instability (CAI). Additionally, there is evidence to suggest that knee and hip performance is altered in those with CAI. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to determine whether CAI is associated with deficits in ankle, knee, and hip torque. Fifteen subjects with unilateral CAI and fifteen subjects with healthy ankles participated. Subjects reported to the laboratory for one session during which the torque production of ankle plantar flexion/dorsiflexion, knee flexion/extension, and hip flexion/extension were measured with an isokinetic device. Subjects performed 5 maximum-effort repetitions of a concentric/concentric protocol at 60°·s−1 for both extremities. Average peak torque (APT) values were calculated. The subjects with CAI demonstrated significantly less APT production for knee flexion (F 1,28 = 5.40; p = 0.03) and extension (F 1,28 = 5.34; p = 0.03). Subjects with CAI exhibited significantly less APT for ankle plantar flexion in the injured limb compared with their noninjured limb (F 1,28 = 6.51; p = 0.02). No significant difference in ankle dorsiflexion or hip flexion/extension APT production existed between the 2 groups. Individuals with CAI, in addition to deficits in ankle plantar flexion torque, had deficits in knee flexor and extensor torque, suggesting that distal joint instability may lead to knee joint neuromuscular adaptations. There were no similar deficits at the hip. Future research should determine what implications this has for prevention and rehabilitation of lower-extremity injury. Clinicians may need to consider including rehabilitation efforts to address these deficits when rehabilitating patients with CAI.

University of Toledo Athletic Training Research Laboratory, University of Toledo, Toledo, Ohio

Address correspondence to Phillip Gribble,

© 2009 National Strength and Conditioning Association