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J Musculoskelet Neuronal Interact, 2020; 20(1): 62-76, PMID: 32131370

Sex differences in bone density, geometry, and bone strength of competitive soccer players.

Year: 2020

Baker BS, Chen Z, Larson RD, Bemben MG, Bemben DA
Department of Health and Exercise Science, University of Oklahoma, Norman, USA.


OBJECTIVES: To examine sex differences in bone characteristics in competitive soccer players. METHODS: 43 soccer players (male, n=23; female, n=20), and 43 matched controls (males, n=23; females, n=20), completed the study. Areal BMD (aBMD) of the total body, lumbar spine, and dual femur and tibiae volumetric BMD (vBMD), bone geometry, and bone strength variables (pQCT) were measured. Bone-specific physical activity and training history were assessed. RESULTS: Male soccer players had significantly greater (p</=0.05) total body and hip aBMD, hip strength indices and 4% and 38% tibia variables than females. Regression analyses determined that BFLBM, not sex, was the strongest predictor of bone variables. Female soccer players exhibited significantly greater percent differences from controls for tibiae variables than males (p</=0.05). Soccer players had greater aBMD and hip strength indices than controls (p</=0.040). Soccer-specific asymmetries were found for 38% total area (2.1%) and pSSI (3.8%), favoring the non-dominant leg (both p</=0.017). CONCLUSION: Bone characteristics adjusted for body size were greater in male versus female soccer players. However, body composition variables were more important predictors of bone characteristics than sex. There were no sex differences in the magnitude of limb asymmetries, suggesting skeletal responsiveness to mechanical loading was similar in males and females.

GID: 5071; Last update: 10.03.2020