Hamstring injury prevention in Belgian and English elite football teams


hamstring injury ; injury prevention ; football ; soccer ; questionnaire.

Published online: Nov 03 2019

Glenn Van Crombrugge , Bernard M. F. M. Duvivier , Kris Van Crombrugge , Johan Bellemans , Koen Peers

From the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Leuven, Belgium


Hamstring injury is the most common injury in European professional football. The purpose of this study was to provide insight into the content of hamstring injury prevention programmes in English and Belgian elite football teams.

Fifteen premier league teams (10 from Belgium and 5 from England) completed a questionnaire on hamstring injury prevention.

Most football teams (93%) screened for hamstring injury risk factors. Less than 60% screened for risk factors including gluteus muscle strength, neural tension and body posture during running. While 80% of the teams had a hamstring injury prevention programme during preseason and official season ; only 47% had a prevention programme during mid-season break. Hamstring muscle strength exercises were mainly performed before (77%) instead of after warming-up.

In conclusion, while most investigated football teams perform hamstring injury prevention, the content and implementation of the prevention programmes is suboptimal in many Belgian and English elite football teams.