2017 Volume 243 Issue 3 Pages 173-178
Elbow or shoulder injuries are common in overhead sports. Because energy derived from the lower extremity passes through the trunk to the upper extremity in overhead motion, a break in such a kinetic chain could lead to arm injuries. However, there is only limited information about the role of the trunk and lower extremity support in preventing elbow or shoulder injuries. This study aimed to explore the association of trunk and lower extremity pain with elbow/shoulder pain among young overhead athletes. We conducted a cross-sectional study using self-reported questionnaires mailed to young athletes belonging to the Miyagi Amateur Sports Association. The final study population comprised 2,215 young athletes playing baseball (n = 1,422), volleyball (n = 546), softball (n = 14), handball (n = 28), tennis (n = 110), or badminton (n = 95). The median age of the participants was 11 years (range: 6 to 15 years). Multiple logistic regression analysis revealed the higher prevalence of elbow and/or shoulder pain in athletes with back pain (OR = 5.52, 95% CI = 3.51-8.69), hip pain (OR = 6.13, 95% CI = 3.35-11.22), knee pain (OR = 2.28, 95% CI = 1.48-3.51), and foot pain (OR = 3.03, 95% CI = 1.95-4.72), compared with those without pain. We propose that trunk or lower extremity pain is significantly associated with elbow or shoulder pain among young overhead athletes. Assessing for pain in trunk or lower extremity, as well as elbow and/or shoulder pain, may help prevent serious injuries in young overhead athletes.