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Muscle, Ligaments and Tendons Journal

The influence of muscle-tendon forces on ACL loading during jump landing: a systematic review

Review article, 125 - 135
doi: 10.11138/mltj/2017.7.1.125
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Abstract
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Background: The goal of this review is to summarise and discuss the reported influence of muscle-tendon forces on anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) loading during the jump-landing task by means of biomechanical analyses of the healthy knee.
Methods: A systematic review of the literature was conducted using different combinations of the terms “knee”, ‘‘ligament’’, ‘‘load’’, “tension “, “length”, ‘‘strain’’, “elongation’’ and ‘‘lengthening’’. 26 original articles (n=16 in vitro studies; n=10 in situ studies) were identified which complied with all inclusion/exclusion criteria.
Results: No apparent trend was found between ACL loading and the ratio between hamstrings and quadriceps muscle-tendon forces prior to or during landing. Four in vitro studies reported reduced peak ACL strain if the quadriceps force was increased; while one in vitro study and one in situ study reported reduced ACL loading if the hamstrings force was increased. A meta-analysis of the reported results was not possible because of the heterogeneity of the confounding factors.
Conclusion: The reported results suggest that increased hip flexion during landing may help in reducing ACL strain by lengthening the hamstrings, and thus increasing its passive resistance to stretch. Furthermore, it appears that increased tensile stiffness of the quadriceps may help in stabilising the knee joint during landing, and thus protecting the passive soft-tissue structures from overloading.
Level of evidence: Ib.

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  1. The influence of muscle-tendon forces on ACL loading during jump landing: a systematic review
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