Circular Components in Center of Pressure Signals

in Motor Control
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Static posturography provides an objective assessment of postural control by characterizing the body sway during upright standing. The center of pressure (COP) signal is recorded by a force platform, and it is analyzed by means of many different models and techniques. Most of the parameters calculated according to these different approaches are affected by relevant intra- and intersubject variability or do not have a clear physiological interpretation. Traditional approaches decompose the COP signal into anteroposterior and mediolateral time series, corresponding to ankle plantar/dorsiflexion and hip adduction/abduction, respectively. In this study we hypothesized that COP signals show inherent rotational characteristics. To verify our hypothesis we applied the rotary spectra analysis to the two-dimensional COP signal to decompose it into clockwise and counterclockwise rotational components. We demonstrated the presence of rotational components in the COP signal of healthy subjects, providing a reference data set of the spectral characteristics of these components.

The authors are with the Dept. of Electronics and Telecommunications, Politecnico di Torino, Torino, Italy.