The tendon loading and maturation process is different for adolescents than adults

If you treat youth and adolescent athletes, this is a very important paper.

It absolutely underlines the fact that the rules of loading and tendon maturation are different for adolescents than for adults and that we must therefore deveolp different training strategies for these athletes.

The entire paper may be read and downloaded here: tendon risk factors in adolescents.pdf

Imbalances in the Development of Muscle and Tendon as Risk Factor for Tendinopathies in Youth Athletes: A Review of Current Evidence and Concepts of Prevention

Falk Mersmann, Sebastian Bohm, and Adamantios Arampatzis, Front Physiol. 2017; 8: 987. Published online 2017 Dec 1.


Tendons feature the crucial role to transmit the forces exerted by the muscles to the skeleton. Thus, an increase of the force generating capacity of a muscle needs to go in line with a corresponding modulation of the mechanical properties of the associated tendon to avoid potential harm to the integrity of the tendinous tissue.

However, as summarized in the present narrative review, muscle and tendon differ with regard to both the time course of adaptation to mechanical loading as well as the responsiveness to certain types of mechanical stimulation.

Plyometric loading, for example, seems to be a more potent stimulus for muscle compared to tendon adaptation.

Simon Bartold
Director of Bartold Clinical