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Thera-Band Exercise Helps Cheerleaders

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The Redskins Cheerleaders have suffered many injuries from their kickline into a drop split. Last year, the first-of-its-kind study found that one-third of cheerleaders who performed the drop-split suffered from lower back and hamstring pain (Greenstein & Bishop 2006).

A team of researchers from the Thera-Band Research Advisory Committee (TRAC) wanted to determine if an exercise intervention targeting the hamstrings could reduce the incidence of hamstring pain.

Dr. Jay Greenstein, the team chiropractor, developed a hamstring training program with Thera-Band band loops. Injury data was collected at three points in the year: team selection in June, before preseason in June, and after the season in December.

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During the 2010 season, the cheerleaders performed the exercises two times per week at practice, as well as at home for three times per week. Those with hamstring pain were assigned a red Thera-Band band loop to perform the 'split-stance' hamstring exercise.

Cheerleaders without hamstring pain used a green Thera-Band loop and performed the split stance exercise, as well as a single-leg stance exercise.

The cheerleaders performed the exercise a prescribed number of times at rehearsals throughout the season.

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At the end of the season, the cheerleaders with hamstring pain experienced significantly less pain after performing the Thera-Band loop exercises.

So get ready to witness the exciting drop split during the Redskins Cheerleaders' pre-game performances in the 2011 season.


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