THE INVESTIGATION OF THE EFFECT OF ARTISTIC GYMNASTICS ON SCAPULOTHORACIC JOINT IN ELITE ADOLESCENTS
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Purpose: This study was done to investigate the effect of artistic gymnastics on scapulothoracic joint in elite adolescent artistic gymnasts. Methods: Twenty elite adolescent artistic gymnasts between 8-14 ages, who had no diagnoses/treatment from the shoulder region, and have been doing artistic gymnastics for at least 3 years; 24 cases who have no license in any sports included into this study. Scapular muscle endurance test, observational scapular dyskinesia test, lateral scapular slide test, protraction degree and tightness of posterior capsule measurements were done after obtaining their demographic information and sports history. Results: While there was a significant relation between sports year and scapular muscle endurance in gymnasts (p<0.05), no relation was found between sports year and posterior capsule tightness and protraction degree (p>0.05). While there was no significant difference between groups for scapular muscle endurance and scapular dyskinesia (p>0.05), scapular muscle endurance values were significantly different in male gymnasts (p<0.05). Scapular dyskinesia on the other hand, was statistically significant in female controls (p<0.05). When we compare two groups; protraction degree in non-dominant side, posterior capsule tightness in both sides were found significantly different in favor of gymnasts (p<0.05). Discussion: We found artistic gymnastics affected scapular muscles however; the results indicated no difference between groups, besides the possible postural adaptations on scapula and shoulder girdle depend upon gymnastics showed the essentiality of special exercises for this region in training programs. In future studies, motion analysis sytems should be used for detailed investigation of arthrokinematic changes.