Subtle Postural Control Changes In Some Soccer Players After Heading Interview with:

Jaclyn B. Caccese MS The University of Delaware PhD Candidate Biomechanics and Movement Science

Jaclyn Caccese

Jaclyn B. Caccese MS
The University of Delaware
PhD Candidate Biomechanics and Movement Science What is the background for this study?

Response: Recently, there has been increased concern regarding the adverse effects of repetitively heading soccer balls on brain function. While some studies have shown impaired balance and vision, it is unclear if these deficits are acute or chronic adaptations. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to identify changes in postural control and vestibular/ocular motor function immediately following an acute bout of 12 purposeful soccer headers. What are the main findings?

Response: The main finding of this study was that women’s soccer players showed an increase in sway velocity, but no other changes in balance or vestibular/ocular motor function were identified. What should clinicians and patients take away from your report?

Response: Subtle changes in postural control may exist immediately following an acute bout of soccer heading in some individuals. It is unknown if these changes are clinically significant, how long they persist, or if they manifest over a career of soccer. What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Response: Future research should focus on understanding the mechanism behind these changes including the role of visual, vestibular, and proprioceptive integration in maintaining balance following soccer heading. Thank you for your contribution to the community.


Abstract presented at the 2016 American Academy of Neurology

No Changes in Postural Control or Near-Point Convergence Following an Acute Bout of Soccer Heading Jaclyn B. Caccese, Thomas W. Kaminski

Related publication in press:

Caccese, J., Buckley, T., & Kaminski, T.W. Sway Area and Velocity Correlated with MobileMat® Balance Error Scoring System (BESS) Scores. Journal of Applied Biomechanics.

Note: Content is Not intended as medical advice. Please consult your health care provider regarding your specific medical condition and questions.

More Medical Research Interviews on

[wysija_form id=”5″]


Last Updated on April 26, 2016 by Marie Benz MD FAAD