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Football boots study shows blade danger

11
Jun '10
Stars at football's World Cup who choose to wear boots with bladed cleats as opposed to the more traditional studs could be putting themselves at greater risk of injury, according to new research from the University of Dundee.

A study of the differing pressures placed on the foot found that bladed boots could be deemed relatively more harmful due to the unnatural increased loading under the lateral half of the foot.

“The additional pressures placed on that area of the foot predispose it to injury,” said Professor Rami Abboud, of the Institute of Motion Analysis and Research at the University of Dundee.

“Our study showed that studded boots can be considered safer as the pressure distribution across the foot and the pattern of pressure progression mimicked the normal motif, whereas the same was not true of bladed boots.”

29 players from amateur football teams were recruited to test the different styles of boot. They were asked to perform three trials each of two activities – a straight run and a run cutting at a 60degree angle on artificial turf.

The research team led by Professor Abboud measured the pressure placed on the feet in both types of run. The boots worn were of the same design, only with different cleat patterns – one studded and one bladed.

“Our research only looked at two boots from one manufacturer, but it does offer support for the anecdotal claims made by many professional footballers that the bladed boots may be responsible for more injuries.

“I would suggest this would be particularly true of lateral metatarsal injuries, given the pressures placed on that area of the foot.”

The research has been published in the journal `Foot and Ankle Surgery'.

The Institute of Motion Analysis and Research is housed within the School of Medicine at the University of Dundee and has comprehensive, state of the art facilities to measure the stresses and pressures placed on the body through varying activities.

University of Dundee


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