Use of Y-Balance test performance to predict musculoskeletal complaints in adolescent dancers


May 2023

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Purposes: The purpose of the study was to determine whether Y-Balance Test (YBT)™ performance could predict occurrences of moderate-to-severe lower extremity musculoskeletal complaints among adolescent dancers over a single dance season (approximately 3 months). Time-to-occurrence of musculoskeletal complaints also was compared between dancers who had high and low YBT™ performance. Methods: Fifty-five adolescent dancers were recruited for the study, and 49 qualified participants completed the study. The YBT™ scores were collected at the beginning of the study, and an injury surveillance questionnaire, the Oslo Sports Trauma Research Center Questionnaire for Overuse Injury - Updated version 2 (OSTRC-O2), was administered at baseline and every other week for three months. An OSTRC-O2 score of 39 or higher from any of the follow-up OSTRC-O2 questionnaires was considered as an occurrence of moderate-to-severe musculoskeletal complaint. A binary logistic regression was used to determine whether YBT™ scores could predict occurrence of moderate-to-severe musculoskeletal complaints. A Kaplan-Meier survival analysis was performed to determine time-to-occurrence of moderate-to-severe musculoskeletal complaints for the participants who had high and low YBT™ scores. Results: The regression analysis showed an odd ratio of 0.049 (p = 0.236, 90% confidence interval = 0.869, 1.035) using YBT™ performance to predict occurrences of moderate-to-severe musculoskeletal complaints. Although the participants who had low YBT™ scores appeared to develop moderate-to-severe musculoskeletal complaints sooner than those who had high YBT™ scores, the difference was not statistically significant (p = 0.671). Conclusion: The results of this study suggest that YBT™ performance is not predictive of lower extremity musculoskeletal complaints in adolescent dancers over a 3-month season. Although it was not statistically significant, adolescent dancers with a low YBT™ score appeared to be more likely to develop a moderate-to-severe musculoskeletal complaint earlier in the season compared to those with a higher YBT™ score. In addition, the occurrence and severity of musculoskeletal complaints was highest during the first month of the dance season and then gradually decreased as the season progressed, indicating a time interval during which young dancers were at risk of injury.



Adolescent Dancers