A critical appraisal of "A prevention strategy to reduce the incidence of injury in high school basketball: a cluster randomized controlled trial"


This critical appraisal looks at a cluster randomized controlled trial study on if a balance training program can reduce the incidence of injury in high school basketball players. The importance of this appraisal is to determine if the findings of this study are significant in furthering the field of physical therapy. In order to find this article, I searched PubMed for studies on how sport specific balance programs affect the incidence of ankle injury in athletes. I narrowed my search by looking for recent studies with testable measures, conducted on athletes undergoing a balance training program. The article I found did a great job providing background information on the importance of the study; however, a bit more evidence on the effect of a balance program in reducing injury would have been preferred. This study was conducted as a single-blind cluster randomized controlled trial, which helps eliminate many biases that could happen without this type of research design. Further explanation on the intricacies of the balance program would help future studies more easily build upon this one. The findings of this study are well organized but providing more information on their clinical significance would be beneficial for the field of physical therapy. One of the strongest aspects of this article is how it correlates its findings with previously conducted studies. The only problem with this is that some of the previous studies may be outdated. Overall, I believe this study does a great job in setting the framework for future studies on injury prevention strategies in adolescent sports. Future studies should look at creating a more extensive balance program for a variety of sports. Although this article does not thoroughly explain the details of the balance program used, I would still use this as a base for intervention strategies with my future patients. I am willing to try whatever it takes if it means reducing the risk of future injury for my patients.