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    Athletes with a concussion history in the last two years have impairments in dynamic balance performance
    The purpose of this study was to determine if National Collegiate Athletics Association Division 1 American Football and Ice Hockey athletes with a history of concussion have impaired dynamic balance control when compared to healthy control athletes. This cross‐sectional observational study recruited 146 athletes; 90 control athletes and 56 athletes with a history of concussion. Athletes were tested during a pre‐season evaluation using the inertial‐sensor instrumented Y Balance Test. Independent variables were normalized reach distance, gyroscope magnitude sample entropy, and jerk magnitude root mean square. Kruskal‐Wallis H test and Dunn‐Bonferroni analysis demonstrated that individuals with a concussion history within the last 2 years have statistically significantly lower jerk magnitude root mean square in the posteromedial (Z = 23.22, P = .015) and posterolateral (Z = 24.64, P = .010) reach directions, when compared to the control group. There was no significant difference between those who sustained a concussion longer than two years ago and the control group for the posteromedial (Z = −1.25; P = .889) and posterolateral (Z = 6.44; P = .469) directions. These findings show that athletes with a concussion history within the last two years possess dynamic balance deficits, when compared to healthy control athletes. Conversely, athletes whose injury occurred greater than 2 years ago possessed comparable performance to the healthy controls. This suggests that sensorimotor control deficits may persist beyond clinical recovery, for up to 2 years. Therefore, clinicians should integrate balance training interventions into the return‐to‐play process to accelerate sensorimotor recovery and mitigate the risk of future injury.
      444Scopus© Citations 10