Date of Award


Document Type



Physical Therapy

First Advisor

Cindy Flom-Meland


Hypermobility, occurrence; recurrence; prevalence; physical therapy; occupational therapy; students; injury


Background: Previous studies have found a higher rate of hypermobility among physical and occupational therapy students compared to the rate of hypermobility within the general public. Hypermobility has been linked to increased injury rates. This raises the question of the influence hypermobility has on injury type and recurrence.

Purpose: The goal of this study was to examine the rate of hypermobility and injury history among physical and occupational therapy students. The injury type and frequency of those with hypermobility was compared to those without hypermobility to determine if there was a relationship. The Foot Posture Index was used to determine if there was a relationship between foot posture and hypermobility.

Methods: A total of 46 subjects (16 male and 30 female) subjects volunteered and were assessed for hypermobility using the Beighton Scale of Hypermobility. A score of four or higher out of nine indicated the presence of generalized joint hypermobility. The foot posture index was used to assess the degree to which a foot can be considered to be in a pronated, supinated, or neutral position. Participants filled out a survey regarding current activity level, previous and current athletic participation, injury regarding type and mechanism of injury.

Results: It was found that 21.74% (10/46) of the subjects were systematically hypermobile according to the Beighton Scale of Hypermobility. There was no statistically significant difference found between the number of soft tissue injuries reported by PT and OT students with systemic hypermobile compared to those who are not hypermobile. There was no relationship found between foot posture and hypermobility.

Conclusion: From the results of this study, it can be concluded that there is an increase in prevalence of hypermobility between PT and OT students in relation to the general public. Physical Therapy students, along with the three OT students, were found to have a rate of hypermobility of 21.74% in comparison to the 4-13% that the general public has.1 In future studies, it is recommended that a larger sample size is utilized