Foot and Ankle Deformity in Young Acrobatic and Artistic Gymnasts

Open access


Purpose. The aim of the paper was to determine the occurrence of feet and ankle deformities in trampoline and artistic gymnasts. Methods. Ten acrobatic gymnasts (trampolinists) and 10 artistic gymnasts aged 6-14 years were recruited. The calcaneal-tibial (rearfoot) angle was determined as the angle of the upper calcaneal tendon and the longitudinal heel axis while Clarke angles were determined by podoscopy. Results. The trampolinists showed significantly greater medial angulation (calcaneal valgus) than the group of gymnasts. Right and left foot Clark’s angles in both the trampoline and artistic gymnasts were above 55°. Conclusions. Trampolinists exhibit significantly more pronounced calcaneal valgus than artistic gymnasts. The prevalence of foot and ankle deformities in both populations should be addressed by coaches in the gymnastics training of young children.

1. Pfeiffer M., Kotz R., Ledl T., Hauser G., Sluga M., Prevalence of Flat Foot in Preschool-Aged Children. Pediatrics, 2006, 118 (2), 634-639, doi: 10.1542/peds.2005-2126.

2. Kasperczyk T., Posture defects - diagnosis and treatment [in Polish]. Kasper, Krakow 2004.

3. Furgał W., Adamczyk A., Foot arch formation in children depending on physical activity level [in Polish]. Medycyna Sportowa, 2008, 24 (5), 311-317.

4. Blajer W., Czaplicki A., Modeling and inverse simulation of somersaults on the trampoline. J Biomech, 2001, 34 (12), 1619-1629, doi: 10.1016/S0021-9290(01)00139-7.

5. Farana R., Jandacka D., Uchytil J., Zahradnik D., Irwin G., Musculoskeletal loading during the round-off in female gymnastics: the effect of hand position. Sports Biomech, 2014,13(2), 123-134, doi: 10.1080/14763141.2014.895034.

6. Boraczyński T., Boraczyński M., Boraczyńska S., Michels A., Changes in body composition and physical fitness of 7-year-old girls after completing a 12-month artistic gymnastics training program. Hum Mov, 2013, 14 (4), 291-298, doi: 10.2478/humo-2013-0034.

7. Grapton X., Lion A., Gauchard G.C., Berrault D., Perrin P.P., Specific injuries induced by the practice of trampoline, tumbling and acrobatic gymnastics. Knee Surg Sports Traumatol Arthrosc, 2013, 21 (2), 494-499, doi: 10.1007/s00167-012-1982-x.

8. Linakis J.G., Mello M.J., Machan J., Amanullah S., Palmisciano L.M., Emergency Department Visits for Pediatric Trampoline - related Injuries: An Update. Acad Emerg Med, 2007, 14 (6), 539-544, doi: 10.1197/j.aem.2007.01.018.

9. Aydog S.T., Ozcakar L., Tetik O., Demirel H.A., Hascelik Z., Doral M.N., Relation between foot arch index and ankle strenght in elite gymnasts: a preliminary study. Br J Sports Med, 2005, 39 (3), 13, doi: 10.1136/bjsm.2004.011627.

10. Klimczak K., Kochański B., Kałużny K., Plaskiewicz A., Smuczyński W., Ratuszek-Sadowska D. et al., The analysis of foot defects in children aged 6-10 years [in Polish]. J Health Sci, 2014, 4 (2), 29-38.

11. Demczuk-Włodarczyk E., The structure of human feet in the period of progressive development [in Polish]. Studia i Monografie AWF we Wrocławiu, 2003, 66.

12. Demczuk-Włodarczyk E., Modified biostereometric assessment method of morphological foot structure [in Polish]. Fizjoterapia, 1998, 6 (1-2), 54-56.

13. Viana O., Bello O., Fernandez del Olmo M., Acero R.M., Immediate effect on vertical jumping ability after the completion of trampoline jumping. Eur J Hum Mov, 2005, 13, 1-15.

14. Kruse D., Lemmen B., Spine injuries in the sport of gymnastics. Curr Sports Med Rep, 2009, 8 (1), 20-28, doi: 10.1249/JSR.0b013e3181967ca6.

15. Mills C., Pain M.T., Yeadon M.R., Reducing ground reaction forces in gymnastics’ landings may increase internal loading. J Biomech, 2009, 42 (6), 671-678, doi: 10.1016/j.jbiomech.2009.01.019.

16. Steinberg N., Hershkovitz I., Peleg S., Dar G., Masharawi Y., Heim M. et al., Range of joint movement in female dancers and non-dancers aged 8 to 16 years: anatomical and clinical implications. Am J Sports Med, 2006, 34 (5), 814-823, doi: 10.1177/0363546505281805.

17. Firak R., Wilusz K., Głowacka M., Trzaska J., Dimorfism of foot arch in the group of acrobats [in Polish]. Rozprawy Naukowe AWF we Wrocławiu, 2009, 29, 555-559.

18. Firak R., Świat T., Somatic traits and the arching of feet in the top female acrobats of the world [in Polish]. In: Szot Z. (ed.), Sport gimnastyczny i taniec w badaniach naukowych. AWF, Gdańsk 2001, 87-92.

19. Pauk J., Ezerskiy V., Rogalski M., Impact of epidemiological factors on occurrence of platypodia in children. Fizjoterapia, 2010, 18 (2), 21-27, doi: 10.2478/v10109-010-0055-2.

20. Kochanowicz A., Kochanowicz K., Pilewska W., Physical development and physical fitness of 6-12-year-old gymnasts [in Polish]. J Health Sci, 2013, 3 (16), 307-323.

Human Movement

The Journal of University School of Physical Education, Wroclaw

Journal Information

CiteScore 2016: 0.41

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2016: 0.208
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2016: 0.230


All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 0 0 0
Full Text Views 138 138 5
PDF Downloads 55 55 3