How Internal Instruction Affects Postural Control in Athletes with Ankle Instability

Poster Presentation XML
Paper ID : 1651-12THCONG
1Department of Sports Medicine, Faculty of Physical Education and Sports Sciences, University of Tehran, Iran
2Department of Health and Sport Medicine, Faculty of Physical Education and Sport Sciences, University of Tehran
This study investigates effects of internal focus instructions during training within 4 weeks of wobble board exercises on performance improvement in athletes with functional ankle insatiability.
This was a quasi-experimental study with pre-test post-test and control group design. 24 female and male college student athletes of basketball, volleyball and futsal teams who had functional ankle instability were selected purposefully. After initial screening, the subjects were recruited based on the inclusion and exclusion criteria and then randomly divided into 2 groups of internal focus and control group. They performed same balance training programs with wobble board for 4 weeks. Length of sway was measured with open and closed eyes by Plantar Pressure Data Acquisition System. The obtained data were analyzed by SPSS. The Kolmogorov-Smirnov Test was used to assess the normal distribution of the study variables. Paired t-test was also used to compare within-group pre-test and post-test scores. Analysis of Covariance (ANCOVA) and Bonferroni post Hoc Test were used to compare between-group results, at the significance level of P≤0.05.
Paired t-test results revealed that after 4 weeks of exercise with wobble board, length of sway significantly decreased in both groups with both open eyes and closed eyes regardless of the focal attention. The ANCOVA results demonstrated that after controlling the effect of pre-test (covariate), there were significant differences in post-test length of sway (P≤0.05). Therefore, Bonferroni post-hoc test indicated that the post-test length of sway in the training group with internal instructions decreased significantly in comparison with the groups with no instructions (P≤0.05). The results were exactly the same with closed eyes.
Long term effects of yoga, Pilates and tai-chi are shown to improve postural control. These exercises are based on body awareness which makes instructors use internal instructions to direct performers' attention towards their body. Applying the "internal focus" instructions within 4 weeks of exercise therapy to improve postural control performance associated in athletes with functional ankle instability may be more effective than exercises without instructions during a period of their rehabilitation process.