Date Presented

Spring 4-1-2007

Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science


Athletic Training

First Advisor

Patricia Aronson

Second Advisor

Nancy Cowden

Third Advisor

Thomas Bowman


The high rate of knee injuries in women’s athletics has been well documented in recent years. There are multiple factors which contribute to the increased risk of injury in female athletes, including biomechanics when landing. Fatigue has also been examined as a contributing factor to injury, but few studies have utilized actual sport participation as a fatiguing protocol. No study has used the Landing Error Scoring System (LESS) to examine the changes that may result from fatigue. The objective of our study was to use the LESS to examine the effects of a two-hour basketball practice on the landing biomechanics of female collegiate basketball players. A 2x2 repeated measures design was utilized in our study. The independent variables were time (pre-intervention and post-intervention) and session (experimental and control). Subjects (n=10) participated in two counterbalanced data collection sessions in the Lynchburg College gymnasium. The order of the sessions was determined randomly, and sessions were separated by approximately three days. Six athletes performed the experimental procedure first, while four performed the control procedure first. The experimental session consisted of a series of five drop landings from a height of 32 cm, the basketball practice of the day (approximately two hours in duration), and another series of five drop landings. The control session consisted of five drop landings, a rest period of two hours, followed by another five drop landings. Subjects were given no instruction on how to land, and were videotaped from the neck down during all drop landings. The subject’s assigned group was blinded while scoring the landings to decrease biasing. Ten healthy, National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) division three women’s basketball athletes (age=18.95±0.31 years, height=T71.2±10.52 cm, mass=65.86±l 1.55 kg) volunteered to participate in the study. Subjects were required to be free of lower extremity injury and/or surgery in the previous 12 months, be able to perform a drop jump without pain, and be able to participate fully in basketball practice. The dependent variable was the LESS score for each drop jump. The LESS uses video feedback to grade landings based on 15 biomechanical factors. Pre- and post-intervention as well as pre- and post- control LESS scores were compared using a 1x2 repeated measures ANOVA. The a priori alpha level was set at P<0.05. LESS scores significantly increased from pre-intervention (6.088±1.887) to post-intervention (6.889±2.230) (P=.028). There was no significant difference from precontrol scores (6.200±1.364) to postcontrol scores (6.422±1.321). (F1,8=1.562, P=.247, n2=.163, l-β=.653). Increased LESS scores may predict an increased risk of ACL injury. Fatigue may play a role in altering landing biomechanics, causing an individual to land less efficiently. This may place the ACL at a higher risk of injury.