OBJECTIVE:: To evaluate if Fédération Internationale de Football Association's "The 11+" injury prevention program improves physical fitness and technical performance in youth futsal players. DESIGN:: Randomized cohort study. SETTING:: Futsal club. PARTICIPANTS:: Thirty-six futsal players (17.3 ± 0.7 years). INTERVENTION:: Players were randomized to an intervention group (n = 18) or a control group (n = 18). Intervention group performed "The 11+" twice per week for 12 weeks. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:: Isokinetic testing to access maximal quadriceps (Q) and hamstring (H) strength, vertical jump (squat jump, SJ; countermovement jump, CMJ), 5-m and 30-m sprint, agility, slalom, and balance performances were also measured. RESULTS:: Intervention group increased (P <0.05) quadriceps concentric (14.7%-27.3%) and hamstrings concentric (9.3%-13.3%) and eccentric (12.7%) peak torque. Intervention group improved functional H:Q ratio by 1.8% to 8.5% (P <0.05). Intervention group improved (P <0.05) SJ (13.8%) and CMJ (9.9%) and 5-m and 30-m sprint (8.9% and 3.3%, respectively), agility (4.7%), and slalom (4.8%) performances. Intervention group also improved balance, by decreasing the number of falls by 30% in the nondominant limb. No changes were observed in control group. CONCLUSIONS:: The results suggest that 'The 11+' can be used as an effective conditioning means for improving physical fitness and technical performance of youth futsal players.
Clinical Journal of Sport Medicine, 2013, Vol 23, Issue 4, p. 318-320