Clinical and biomechanical outcomes of rehabilitation targeting intersegmental control in athletic groin pain: prospective cohort of 205 patients

Enda King, Andrew Franklyn-Miller, Chris Richter, Eamon O'Reilly, Mark Doolan, Kieran Moran, Siobhan Strike, Éanna Falvey

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BACKGROUND: Clinical assessments and rehabilitation in athletic groin pain (AGP) have focused on specific anatomical structures and uniplanar impairments rather than whole body movement.

OBJECTIVE: To examine the effectiveness of rehabilitation that targeted intersegmental control in patients with AGP and to investigate post rehabilitation changes in cutting biomechanics.

METHODS: Two hundred and five patients with AGP were rehabilitated focusing on clinical assessment of intersegmental control, linear running and change of direction mechanics in this prospective case series. Hip and Groin Outcome Score (HAGOS) was the primary outcome measure. Secondary measures included pain-free return to play rates and times, pain provocation on squeeze tests and three-dimensional (3D) biomechanical analysis during a 110°cutting manoeuvre.

RESULTS: Following rehabilitation, patients demonstrated clinically relevant improvements in HAGOS scores (effect size (ES): 0.6-1.7). 73% of patients returned to play pain-free at a mean of 9.9 weeks (±3.5). Squeeze test values also improved (ES: 0.49-0.68). Repeat 3D analysis of the cutting movement demonstrated reductions in ipsilateral trunk side flexion (ES: 0.79) and increased pelvic rotation in the direction of travel (ES: 0.76). Changes to variables associated with improved cutting performance: greater centre of mass translation in the direction of travel relative to centre of pressure (ES: 0.4), reduced knee flexion angle (ES: 0.3) and increased ankle plantar flexor moment (ES: 0.48) were also noted.

CONCLUSIONS: Rehabilitation focused on intersegmental control was associated with improved HAGOS scores, high rates of pain-free return to sporting participation and biomechanical changes associated with improved cutting performance across a range of anatomical diagnoses seen in AGP.

© 2018 The Author(s). This is an Open Access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4) licences, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
Early online date17 Mar 2018
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 17 Mar 2018


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