Background: The relationship between stiffness and drop jump performance in athletes in various stages of development has yet to be fully investigated. The first aim of this study was to investigate the association between the stiffness of the patellar and quadriceps tendon (PT, QT), gastrocnemius-Achilles tendon unit (GAT), and rectus femoris (RF) using drop jump (DJ) performance in young basketball players. The second aim was to investigate possible variations in the stiffness levels of those tissues in different developmental stages. Methods: The stiffness levels of the GAT, PT, QT, and RF were measured in both limbs in 73 male basketball players aged 12 to 18 years. The reactive strength index (RSI), contact time (CT) and jump height (JH) during 30 and 40 cm DJs were also measured. Results: Pearson correlation coefficients showed a significant association between DJ performance and PT, QT, GAT, and RF dynamic stiffness. Moreover, the youngest subjects were found to have lower stiffness values than the older ones. Conclusions: Tissue stiffness can affect athletic performance by modifying the stretch-shortening cycle in young basketball players. Stiffness of muscles and tendons increases during the maturation process. Further investigations could shed light on the effect of training on the stiffness of muscles and tendons.

Relationship between Muscle-Tendon Stiffness and Drop Jump Performance in Young Male Basketball Players during Developmental Stages

Gervasi, Marco
;
Benelli, Piero;
2022

Abstract

Background: The relationship between stiffness and drop jump performance in athletes in various stages of development has yet to be fully investigated. The first aim of this study was to investigate the association between the stiffness of the patellar and quadriceps tendon (PT, QT), gastrocnemius-Achilles tendon unit (GAT), and rectus femoris (RF) using drop jump (DJ) performance in young basketball players. The second aim was to investigate possible variations in the stiffness levels of those tissues in different developmental stages. Methods: The stiffness levels of the GAT, PT, QT, and RF were measured in both limbs in 73 male basketball players aged 12 to 18 years. The reactive strength index (RSI), contact time (CT) and jump height (JH) during 30 and 40 cm DJs were also measured. Results: Pearson correlation coefficients showed a significant association between DJ performance and PT, QT, GAT, and RF dynamic stiffness. Moreover, the youngest subjects were found to have lower stiffness values than the older ones. Conclusions: Tissue stiffness can affect athletic performance by modifying the stretch-shortening cycle in young basketball players. Stiffness of muscles and tendons increases during the maturation process. Further investigations could shed light on the effect of training on the stiffness of muscles and tendons.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11576/2708710
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