Comparison of Hip Internal and External Rotation Between Intercollegiate Distance Runners and Non-Running College Students

Document Type

Article - Open Access


International Journal of Sports Physical Therapy

Publication Date


Abstract/ Summary

Background: The increased incidence of lower extremity injury in runners compared to the general population is well documented. The amount of passive hip rotation and the position of hip flexion or extension at which it occurs may be factors related to injury incidence. Purpose: The purpose of the current study was to measure and compare hip rotation passive range of motion in male and female runners and non-runners at 0 and 90 degrees (°) of hip flexion. Study Design: Descriptive Laboratory Study. Methods: Eighteen Division II collegiate distance runners (9 female, 9 male, mean age =19.1, +/- 1.1 years) who had run for an average of 7.1 (SD=1.7) years participated in the study. Twenty non-runners (10 female, 10 male, mean age=19.6, +/- 1.1 years) from the same institution were also recruited. Passive hip internal rotation (IR) and external rotation (ER) were measured with a universal goniometer in 90° of hip flexion in a seated position, and in 0° of hip flexion in prone position. Results: There was a significant difference in IR measured in 0° of hip flexion, between runners and non-runners (F(1,37)=8.04, p=.007). Additionally, the difference in IR between males (36.68 +/-9.19 degrees) and females (45.99 +/- 9.12) was significantly different (F(1,37)=20.79, p=.001). There were no other statistically significant differences in measurements between groups. Conclusions: Collegiate runners had significantly greater passive hip IR when measured at 0° of hip flexion compared to the non-runners. Female runners had significantly greater passive hip IR compared to the male participants across both runners and non-runners.