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Running-Related Achilles Tendon Injury: A Prospective Biomechanical Study in Recreational Runners

Jiri Skypala, Joseph Hamill, Michal Sebera, Steriani Elavsky, Andrea Monte, and Daniel Jandacka

There are relatively few running studies that have attempted to prospectively identify biomechanical risk factors associated with Achilles tendon (AT) injuries. Therefore, the aim was to prospectively determine potential running biomechanical risk factors associated with the development of AT injuries in recreational, healthy runners. At study entry, 108 participants completed a set of questionnaires. They underwent an analysis of their running biomechanics at self-selected running speed. The incidence of AT running-related injuries (RRI) was assessed after 1-year using a weekly questionnaire standardized for RRI. Potential biomechanical risk factors for the development of AT RRI injury were identified using multivariable logistic regression. Of the 103 participants, 25% of the sample (15 males and 11 females) reported an AT RRI on the right lower limb during the 1-year evaluation period. A more flexed knee at initial contact (odds ratio = 1.146, P = .034) and at the midstance phase (odds ratio = 1.143, P = .037) were significant predictors for developing AT RRI. The results suggested that a 1-degree increase in knee flexion at initial contact and midstance was associated with a 15% increase in the risk of an AT RRI, thus causing a limitation of training or a stoppage of running in runners.

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In Silico Biomarkers of Motor Function to Inform Musculoskeletal Rehabilitation and Orthopedic Treatment

Ilse Jonkers, Erica Beaucage-Gauvreau, Bryce Adrian Killen, Dhruv Gupta, Lennart Scheys, and Friedl De Groote

In this review, we elaborate on how musculoskeletal (MSK) modeling combined with dynamic movement simulation is gradually evolving from a research tool to a promising in silico tool to assist medical doctors and physical therapists in decision making by providing parameters relating to dynamic MSK function and loading. This review primarily focuses on our own and related work to illustrate the framework and the interpretation of MSK model-based parameters in patients with 3 different conditions, that is, degenerative joint disease, cerebral palsy, and adult spinal deformities. By selecting these 3 clinical applications, we also aim to demonstrate the differing levels of clinical readiness of the different simulation frameworks introducing in silico model-based biomarkers of motor function to inform MSK rehabilitation and treatment, with the application for adult spinal deformities being the most recent of the 3. Based on these applications, barriers to clinical integration and positioning of these in silico technologies within standard clinical practice are discussed in the light of specific challenges related to model assumptions, required level of complexity and personalization, and clinical implementation.

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Standing Pelvic Tilt Is Associated With Dynamic Pelvic Tilt During Running When Measured by 3-Dimensional Motion Capture

Madison S. Mach, Kyle T. Ebersole, Hayley E. Ericksen, Anh-Dung Nguyen, and Jennifer E. Earl-Boehm

Standing pelvic tilt (PT) is related to biomechanics linked with increased risk of injury such as dynamic knee valgus. However, there is limited evidence on how standing PT relates to dynamic PT and whether the palpation meter (PALM), a tool to measure standing PT, is valid against 3-dimensional (3D) motion analysis. The purposes of this study were to (1) determine the criterion validity of the PALM for measuring standing PT and (2) identify the relationship between standing PT and dynamic PT during running. Participants (n = 25; 10 males and 15 females) had their standing PT measured by the PALM and 3D motion analysis. Dynamic PT variables were defined at initial contact and toe off. No relationship between the 2 tools was found. Significant large positive relationships between standing PT and PT at initial contact (r = .751, N = 25, P < .001) and PT at toe off (r = .761, N = 25, P < .001) were found. Since no relationship was found between standing PT measured by the PALM and 3D motion analysis, the PALM is not a valid alternative to 3D motion analysis. Clinicians may be able to measure standing PT and gain valuable information on dynamic PT, allowing clinicians to quickly assess whether further biomechanical testing is needed.

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Can Shoulder Impairments Be Classified From 3-Dimensional Kinematics Using Inertial Sensors?

Bruno Mazuquin, Karl Peter Gill, Puneet Monga, James Selfe, and Jim Richards

Inertial sensors may help clinicians to assess patients’ movement and potentially support clinical decision making. Our aim was to determine whether shoulder range of motion during movement tasks measured using inertial sensors is capable of accurately discriminating between patients with different shoulder problems. Inertial sensors were used to measure 3-dimensional shoulder motion during 6 tasks of 37 patients on the waiting list for shoulder surgery. Discriminant function analysis was used to identify whether the range of motion of different tasks could classify patients with different shoulder problems. The discriminant function analysis could correctly classify 91.9% of patients into one of the 3 diagnostic groups based. The tasks that associated a patient with a particular diagnostic group were the following: subacromial decompression: abduction, rotator cuff repair of tears ≤5 cm: flexion and rotator cuff repair of tears >5 cm: combing hair, abduction, and horizontal abduction–adduction. The discriminant function analysis showed that range of motion measured by inertial sensors can correctly classify patients and could be used as a screening tool to support surgery planning.

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Volume 39 (2023): Issue 3 (Jun 2023)

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Examining the Effect of Time-From-Treatment on Activities of Daily Living Kinematics in Breast Cancer Survivors

Rebecca A.M. Wills, Jacquelyn M. Maciukiewicz, Marina Mourtzakis, and Clark R. Dickerson

Breast cancer affects one in 8 females with a 5-year survival rate of 89%. Up to 72% of breast cancer survivors have trouble with activities of daily living (ADL) following treatment. Increased time-from-treatment improves some measures of function, yet ADL limitations persist. Therefore, this study assessed the effect of time-from-treatment on upper extremity kinematics during ADLs in breast cancer survivors. Twenty-nine female breast cancer survivors were divided into 2 groups: <1 year (n = 12) and 1–2 years (n = 17) from treatment. Kinematics were collected during 6 ADL tasks, and humerothoracic joint angles were quantified. A 2-way mixed analysis of variance assessed the effects of time-from-treatment and arm on maximum angles for each ADL. Decreased maximum angle existed for breast cancer survivors with increased time-from-treatment during all ADLs. Breast cancer survivors in the 1–2 years group used ∼28° to 32° lower elevation, ∼14° to 28° lower axial rotation, and ∼10° to 14° lower plane of elevation range across tasks. Decreased ranges of arm movement during ADLs with increased time-from-treatment may reflect compensatory movement strategies. Recognizing this shift in strategies and accompanying underlying disease progression can help inform responses to functional performance limitations in breast cancer survivors as delayed effects are present posttreatment.

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Subsequent Jumping Increases the Knee and Hip Abduction Moment, Trunk Lateral Tilt, and Trunk Rotation Motion During Single-Leg Landing in Female Individuals

Masato Chijimatsu, Tomoya Ishida, Masanori Yamanaka, Shohei Taniguchi, Ryo Ueno, Ryohei Ikuta, Mina Samukawa, Takumi Ino, Satoshi Kasahara, and Harukazu Tohyama

Single-leg landings with or without subsequent jumping are frequently used to evaluate landing biomechanics. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of subsequent jumping on the external knee abduction moment and trunk and hip biomechanics during single-leg landing. Thirty young adult female participants performed a single-leg drop vertical jumping (SDVJ; landing with subsequent jumping) and single-leg drop landing (SDL; landing without subsequent jumping). Trunk, hip, and knee biomechanics were evaluated using a 3-dimensional motion analysis system. The peak knee abduction moment was significantly larger during SDVJ than during SDL (SDVJ 0.08 [0.10] N·m·kg−1·m−1, SDL 0.05 [0.10] N·m·kg−1·m−1, P = .002). The trunk lateral tilt and rotation angles toward the support-leg side and external hip abduction moment were significantly larger during SDVJ than during SDL (P < .05). The difference in the peak hip abduction moment between SDVJ and SDL predicted the difference in the peak knee abduction moment (P = .003, R 2 = .252). Landing tasks with subsequent jumping would have advantages for evaluating trunk and hip control as well as knee abduction moment. In particular, evaluating hip abduction moment may be important because of its association with the knee abduction moment.

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Head Impact Exposure in Female Collegiate Soccer by Activity Type

Mary Frances Segars, Tanner M. Filben, N. Stewart Pritchard, Logan E. Miller, Christopher M. Miles, Joel D. Stitzel, and Jillian E. Urban

Soccer, one of the most popular sports in the world, has one of the highest rates of sports-related concussions. Additionally, soccer players are frequently exposed to nonconcussive impacts from intentionally heading the ball, a fundamental component of the sport. There have been many studies on head impact exposure in soccer, but few focus on soccer practices or practice activities. This study aimed to characterize the frequency and magnitude of head impacts in National Collegiate Athletic Association Division I female soccer practice activities using a custom-fit instrumented mouthpiece. Sixteen players were instrumented over the course of 54 practice sessions. Video analysis was performed to verify all mouthpiece-recorded events and classify practice activities. Category groupings of practice activities include technical training, team interaction, set pieces, position-specific, and other. Differences in head impact rates and peak resultant kinematics were observed across activity types and category groupings. Technical training had the highest impact rate compared to other category groupings. Impacts occurring during set piece activities had the highest mean kinematic values. Understanding drill exposure can help inform coaches on training plans aimed to reduce head impact exposure for their athletes.

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Inertial Sensor-Based Estimation of Temporal Events in Skating Sub-Techniques While In-Field Roller Skiing

Frédéric Meyer, Magne Lund-Hansen, Jan Kocbach, Trine M. Seeberg, Øyvind B. Sandbakk, and Andreas Austeng

The aim of this study was to test and adapt a treadmill-developed method for determination of inner-cycle parameters and sub-technique in cross-country roller ski skating for a field application. The method is based on detecting initial and final ground contact of poles and skis during cyclic movements. Eleven athletes skied 4 laps of 2.5 km at low- and high-endurance intensities, using 2 types of skis with different rolling coefficients. Participants were equipped with inertial measurement units attached to their wrists and skis, and insoles with pressure sensors and poles with force measurements were used as reference systems. The method based on inertial measurement units was able to detect >97% of the temporal events detected with the reference system. The inner-cycle temporal parameters had a precision ranging from 49 to 59 milliseconds, corresponding to 3.9% to 13.7% of the corresponding inner-cycle duration. Overall, this study showed good reliability of using inertial measurement units on athletes’ wrists and skis to determine temporal events, inner-cycle parameters, and the performed sub-techniques in cross-country roller ski skating in field conditions.

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Effects of Visual Input Absence on Balance Recovery Responses to Lateral Standing Surface Perturbations in Older and Younger Adults

Woohyoung Jeon, James Borrelli, and Hao-Yuan Hsiao

Although the ability to recover balance in the lateral direction has important implications with regard to fall risk in older adults, the effect of visual input on balance recovery in response to lateral perturbation and the effect of age are not well studied. We investigated the effect of visual input on balance recovery response to unpredictable lateral surface perturbations and its age-related changes. Ten younger and 10 older healthy adults were compared during balance recovery trials performed with the eyes open and eyes closed (EC). Compared with younger adults, older adults showed increased electromyography (EMG) peak amplitude of the soleus and gluteus medius, reduced EMG burst duration of the gluteus maximus and medius, and increased body sway (SD of the body’s center of mass acceleration) in EC. In addition, older adults exhibited a smaller % increase (EC—eyes open) of the ankle eversion angle, hip abduction torque, EMG burst duration of the fibularis longus, and a greater % increase of body sway. All kinematics, kinetics, and EMG variables were greater in EC compared with eyes open in both groups. In conclusion, the absence of visual input negatively affects the balance recovery mechanism more in older adults compared with younger adults.