BIOMECHANICAL DESIGN OF FOOTBALL BOOTS: EFFECT OF STUDS ON PERFORMANCE AND INJURY PREVENTION

  • Gabriel Brizuela
  • Roberto Ferrandis
  • Enrique Alcántara
  • Antonio Martinez
  • Arturo Forner
Keywords: football, injury prevention

Abstract

Football boots can have an effect on performance and on footballers’ injuries (Chan et al., 1993; Masson and Hess, 1989). With the purpose of studying and improving such effects, 5 football boot prototypes were made, with the same materials, design and upper construction, but a different number and distribution of studs on the soles. Previously, an initial prototype was made taking into account biomechanical and anatomical criteria, the foot areas better prepared to support mechanical loads and the effect of the distribution of studs on the axes of foot movement and the braking and drive forces during displacements.1 Tests were carried out with test subjects ( football players)2 who made performance tests on an obstacle course (Brizuela et al., 1997) using an electronic chronograph system, rear foot stability tests during fast movements in changes of direction by means of electrogoniometers, plantar pressure distribution tests during running by means of instrumented insoles and comfort tests during the normal practice of football by means of subjective evaluation questionnaires. All these tests were performed using a natural turf field. The results show that boots with a greater number of studs (15, 14 studs) caused poorer performance than those with a lesser number (13 studs), less comfort during use and a greater plantar pressure distribution. Regarding the distribution of studs, the different configurations yielded significant differences in the rear foot stability test, comfort during use and plantar pressure distribution results. The best results in regard to these aspects were achieved by the prototype with 13 studs, which was designed according to biomechanical and anatomical criteria. As a conclusion, we can point out that the design of the football boot sole, in particular the distribution of studs according to biomechanical criteria, can positively affect relevant aspects for the practice of football, which can increase subjective comfort without diminishing performance and can also be related3 to the prevention of footballers’ injuries. REFERENCES: Brizuela, G., Llana, S., Ferrandis, R., García-Belenguer, A. (1997). The Influence of Basketball Shoes with Increased Ankle Support on Shock Attenuation and Performance in Running and Jumping. Journal of Sports Sciences 15, 5, 505-515. Chan, K.M., Yuan, Y., Li, C.K., Chien, P., Tsang, G. (1993). Sports Causing Most Injuries in Hong Kong. J. Sports Med. 27, 4, 263-267. Masson, M., Hess, H. (1989). Typical Soccer Injuries. Their Effects on the Design of the Athletic Shoe. In B. Segesser, W. Pförringer (Eds.), The Shoe in Sport. London, Wolfe Publishing Ltd., 89-95.
Section
Equipment / Instrumentation