Purpose: Hamstring tightness has been documented in apparently healthy Nigerian adults and in those with musculoskeletal problems, but the influence of age on hamstring tightness has not been studied. This study was therefore designed to determine the influence of age on hamstring tightness in apparently healthy subjects.
Methods: Hamstring tightness was measured using the active knee extension test (AKET) in 240 apparently healthy male and female subjects, aged 5- 59 years. The subjects were recruited into 6 age groups using the purposive sampling technique. Hamstring tightness was compared across the age groups using one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA). The independent t-test was used to compare hamstring tightness on both lower limbs in male and female subjects.
Results: Subjects' mean age was 29.63 ± 16.72
years. All subjects had hamstring tightness (absolute extension lag) and this increased with age up to age group 40-49 years. The male subjects had significantly higher hamstring tightness than the females in all the age groups.
Conclusion: This study suggests that hamstring tightness increases in apparently healthy Nigerians from childhood up to age 40-49 years and it is higher in males than females.
Key words: hamstring tightness, age, active knee extension test.
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