Lindsey Legg, Tyler Donahue, Shelby Peel, Scott Piland, Tanner Thorsen. University of Southern Mississippi, Hattiesburg, MS.

BACKGROUND: Shoe collar height has been shown to influence ankle biomechanics during dynamic sport movements. In volleyball specifically, the effect of shoe collar height on ankle biomechanics are not well understood. Additionally, the magnitude to which volleyball shoe collar height affects inter-limb mechanics is inconclusive. The purpose of this research was to compare ground reaction forces (GRF) and ankle biomechanics during unilateral landing with different shoe collar heights in both limbs. It was hypothesized that participants would exhibit reduced initial contact, peak dorsiflexion and eversion angles and peak plantarflexion and inversion moments while wearing mid-cut (MC) shoes in the non-dominant limb (NDL). It was also hypothesized that vertical and posterior directed GRF would be greater while wearing MC shoes in the NDL. METHODS: Seventeen female collegiate volleyball players (20.12 ± 1.32 years) performed unilateral landings on each limb in both MC and low-top (LT) versions of the same shoe (Crazyflight, Adidas AG, Herzogenaurach, Germany). Participants landed from a 30 cm high box placed 40% of the participants height from the leading edge of a force plate. GRF were collected using AMTI force plates (2400 Hz) and ankle joint kinematics with a Qualisys motion capture system (240 Hz), and ankle joint kinetics were computed. A two-way repeated measures ANOVA with Bonferroni corrections was performed to compare shoe and limb conditions. RESULTS: An interaction was found for peak lateral GRF (p=0.012), and post-hoc analysis revealed greater medial GRF for the NDL in the MC shoe compared to the LT (p=0.003). A significant shoe main effect was found for peak medial GRF (p=0.017), peak dorsiflexion angles (p=0.038), and peak plantar flexion moments (p=0.019). A main effect of limb was found for peak inversion and eversion angles (p=0.001, p=0.008). CONCLUSIONS: Participants landed with greater medially directed GRF, reduced dorsiflexion angle, and greater plantarflexion moment in the MC shoes. In the NDL, participants landed with greater peak eversion angle and smaller inversion angles. Previous literature has associated reduced dorsiflexion range of motion (ROM) to ACL injury risk. These results suggest MC shoes reduce dorsiflexion ROM and alter frontal plane GRF while the NDL experienced laterally directed frontal plane ROM which may have implications for loading and injury risks at more proximal joints.

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