BACKGROUND: The aim of this study was to determine whether toe sliding is more likely to cause knee injuries than flatfoot sliding in curling.
METHODS: Twelve curlers participated in the study, each delivering 12 stones. Six stones per volunteer were delivered using a flatfoot slide and six were delivered using a toe slide. The Pedar-X in-shoe pressure system recorded the plantar pressure during each of the slides, while a sagittal plane digital video recorded the body position of the curler. Measurements were taken from the video recordings using a software overlay program (MB Ruler), and this, combined with the Pedar-X data, gave the overall joint force in the tuck knee.
RESULTS: The knee joint force for toe sliding was more than double that of flatfoot sliding (p<0.05). There was a strong correlation between the increase in knee joint force and the increase in the moment arm of the ground reaction force. Images produced using the three-dimensional Vicon system confirm that toe sliding produces a larger moment arm than flatfoot sliding.
CONCLUSION: Injuries are more likely to occur in toe sliding, compared with flatfoot sliding, due to the increase in force and moment, pushing the weight of the curler forward over the knee, which could make the adopted position less stable. Curlers might consider avoiding toe sliding to reduce the risk of knee injuries if the two types of delivery could be performed equally well.
- Journal article