Changes in Clinical Measures and Tissue Adaptations in Collegiate Swimmers Across a Competitive Season
According to the NCAA Sports Sponsorship and Participations Rates Report, 22,375 male and female collegiate swimmers competed during the 2016-2017 season.
Despite their competitive success:
- 29.5% of recently surveyed NCAA swimmers reported competing with arm trouble along with
- 18.2% competing with a current injury.
The same authors also suggest a cumulative effect of swimming training on shoulder pain as shown by swimmers competing 11 or more years having lower functional scores than swimmers competing 10 years or less.
Due to high training volume, competitive swimmers incur shoulder pain and injury, but certain physical characteristics, such as:
- shoulder range of motion (ROM) and endurance, and
- tissue adaptations such as posterior capsule thickness (PCT) and supraspinatus tendon structure may also be risk factors.
Decreased endurance and ROM have been found in competitive swimmers along with being related to pain. However, no longitudinal studies have examined:
- pain and
- range of motion,
- training volume,
- shoulder endurance and
- tendon structure.