Aim: Although the football goalkeepers are overhead athletes, no studies have reported the prevalence of disabled throwing shoulder (DTS) and the shoulder function. Thus, this study aimed to investigate the prevalence of DTS among youth football goalkeepers and to determine the relationship among their shoulder functions. Methods: Youth football goalkeepers, who participated in a pre-participation medical examination were included in the study. The questionnaire was handed out before the examination to determine the players' age, dominant hand, and shoulder pain history. If the player had a history of shoulder pain during ball throwing motion in the past, they were defined as goalkeepers with DTS. Physical examination of scapular positioning, scapular retraction and rotator cuff muscle strength, and ultrasonographic evaluation were performed. Results: Six goalkeepers (16%) had a history of DTS among the 38 male youth football goalkeepers. The presence of scapular malpositioning, limitation of scapular retraction, and decrease in rotator cuff strength was significantly higher in goalkeepers with DTS than in those without DTS (p = 0.03, p < 0.001, p < 0.001, respectively). Three goalkeepers with DTS revealed ultrasonographic findings. Conclusion: The prevalence of DTS among youth football goalkeepers was 16%. All these players had scapular malpositioning and limitation of scapular retraction. Scapular malpositioning and limitation of scapular retraction may be related to the DTS in youth football goalkeepers. Level of evidence: Level IV.
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