A. Traut1,5, V. Ugalde2, M. Bies3, L. Kenyon4, C. Pollard1,5

1Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR; 2Orthopedic and Neurosurgical Center of the Cascades, Bend, OR; 3Western University, Lebanon, OR; 4Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN; 5Oregon State University-Cascades, Bend, OR

A goal of pre-participation sports physical examinations is to identify athletes at an increased risk for musculoskeletal injury. The single leg squat test (SLS) is a biomechanical screening tool that is simple, easily reproduced, and has been validated with three dimensional motion analysis. A positive SLS test used in frontal plane analysis may be suggestive of poor lower extremity mechanics, reduced core strength, and/or hip abductor weakness thus placing the athlete at higher risk of a lower extremity injury. PURPOSE: To determine the predictive value of the SLS test in predicting lower extremity injuries in adolescent, high school athletes with prospective injury data collected by athletic trainers over a one year period. METHODS: Two hundred and sixty-two high school athletes from central Oregon were evaluated while performing an SLS test during the first week of formal team practice at the school or during pre-participation physicals in August before school. These athletes participated in sports with a high risk for lower extremity injury, which commonly included cutting, running and landing movements. The specific sports included soccer, basketball, football, wrestling, and track and field. Injuries sustained while playing sports during the following academic year were reported to each of the respective high school’s certified athletic trainer (ATC). At the time of the injury, the ATC input the injury data into an electronic database.Sensitivity, specificity, and negative predictive value (NPV) were calculated for the SLS test in relation to lower extremity injuries. RESULTS: The sensitivity, specificity, and NPV of the SLS test in predicting lower extremity injuries were 50%, 37% and 92%, respectively. CONCLUSION: The SLS test is a biomechanical tool with good negative predictive value that can be used to evaluate high school athletes for potential injury risk. Given the simplicity of this screening tool, the SLS test can easily be incorporated into high volume pre-participation sports physical exams for high-risk athlete populations.

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