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Rehabilitation interventions need more than methodological standardisation: an individualised approach
  1. Neil Welch1,2,
  2. Chris Richter1,
  3. Kieran Moran3,4,
  4. Andy Franklyn-Miller1,5
  1. 1 Sports Medicine, Sports Surgery Clinic, Dublin, Ireland
  2. 2 INSIGHT Research Centre, Dublin City University, Dublin, Ireland
  3. 3 School of Health and Human Performance, Dublin City University, Dublin, Ireland
  4. 4 Human Sensing, INSIGHT Research Centre, Dublin, Ireland
  5. 5 Centre for Health, Exercise and Sports Medicine, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia
  1. Correspondence to Neil Welch; neilwelch{at}


Objectives: The main aim in the current study was to use a single-subject analysis to profile the physical performance characteristics of individuals within an injured group and a between-group approach to profile the group as a whole. These profiles were then used to inform single-subject and between-group rehabilitation interventions. Methods: Fifty-three (28 with athletic groin pain and 25 non-injured) Gaelic football players (24.8 years±7.1 years; 179 cm±5.5 cm; 79.7 kg±9.2 kg) underwent 3D biomechanical analysis, which was used to measure a series of physical performance characteristics. The non-injured group was used to create a ‘performance database’ to compare the injured individuals, and a between-group analysis was also conducted. The scores from each analysis were used to inform the targets of interventions. Results: The analysis highlighted the variety of profiles that existed across the tested individuals and that these profiles differed from that of the between-group analysis. By analysing individuals in a single-subject approach, detail can be seen that is lost with between-group analysis.

  • Rehabilitation
  • Groin
  • Injuries

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  • Twitter Neil Welch @nwconditioning.

  • Acknowledgements The authors would like to thank Associate Professor Dominik Liebl for his guidance on the statistical testing employed in the methods for this study. We would also like to thank friends and colleagues at the Sports Surgery Clinic for their support and assistance that goes into all of the work that we do.

  • Contributors NW Primary author involved in all aspects of data; C R Assisted with data analysis and coding for statistical testing along with collaborating with the group on multiple drafts of the article; KM PhD supervisor for NW during which this study data were collected assisted the group in writing multiple drafts of the article; AF-M Assisted with the research design and the overall direction of the article and was involved in the review of multiple drafts of the article.

  • Funding This research received no specific grant from an funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Data availability statement All data relevant to the study are included in the article or uploaded as supplemental information.

  • Supplemental material This content has been supplied by the author(s). It has not been vetted by BMJ Publishing Group Limited (BMJ) and may not have been peer-reviewed. Any opinions or recommendations discussed are solely those of the author(s) and are not endorsed by BMJ. BMJ disclaims all liability and responsibility arising from any reliance placed on the content. Where the content includes any translated material, BMJ does not warrant the accuracy and reliability of the translations (including but not limited to local regulations, clinical guidelines, terminology, drug names and drug dosages), and is not responsible for any error and/or omissions arising from translation and adaptation or otherwise.