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  • Author: Clark R. Dickerson x
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Bryan R. Picco, Meghan E. Vidt and Clark R. Dickerson

Scapular kinematics are important indicators of dyskinesis, often suggesting underlying shoulder pathology, but the influence of sex is unknown. This study’s objective was to examine scapular kinematics in healthy males and females. Positions of surface-mounted reflective markers were tracked during arm elevation movements in 0°/30°/40°/60°/90°/120° planes. Scapulothoracic rotations (protraction/retraction, medial/lateral rotation, posterior/anterior tilt) were calculated. ANOVA analysis evaluated main and interaction effects of sex, plane, phase, and elevation angle. Males and females had similar protraction/retraction and medial/lateral rotation kinematics; mean sex-related peak angle differences were 2.5°, 1.8° (raise [concentric]), respectively, and 2.9°, 2.7° (lower [eccentric]), respectively. Largest sex differences for mean peak angle occurred for posterior/anterior tilt at higher elevation angles (raise, 8.4°; lower, 8.5°). Elevation, plane, and phase were main effects for all scapular rotations (P < .001). Sex was not a main effect for any rotations. Sex × elevation interactions influenced protraction/retraction (P < .001) and posterior/anterior tilt (P < .001). Sex × plane (P ≤ .01) and sex × phase (P ≤ .002) interactions influenced all rotations. Lower posterior tilt for females compared to males at higher elevation angles could relate to higher female shoulder pathology incidence. Sex, plane, and phase are necessary components of uninjured scapular kinematics. Sex-specific differences provide insight into potential shoulder pathology etiology. These data provide a benchmark to assess pathological populations.

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Steven L. Fischer, Bryan R. Picco, Richard P. Wells and Clark R. Dickerson

Exerting manual forces is critical during occupational performance. Therefore, being able to estimate maximum force capacity is particularly useful for determining how these manual exertion demands relate to available capacity. To facilitate this type of prediction requires a complete understanding of how maximum force capacity is governed biomechanically. This research focused on identifying how factors including joint moment strength, balance and shoe-floor friction affected hand force capacity during pulling, pressing downward and pushing medially. To elucidate potential limiting factors, joint moments were calculated and contrasted with reporte joint strength capacities, the balancing point within the shoe-floor interface was calculated and expresess relative to the area defined by the shoe-floor interface, and the net applied horizontal forces were compare with the available friction. Each of these variables were calculated as participants exerted forces in a series o conditions designed to systematically control or restrict certain factors from limiting hand force capacity. The results demonstrated that hand force capacity, in all tested directions, was affected by the experimental conditions (up to 300%). Concurrently, biomechanical measures reached or surpassed reported criterion threshold inferring specific biomechanical limitations. Downward exertions were limited by elbow strength, wherea pulling exertions were often limited by balance along the anterior-posterior axis. No specific limitations wer identified for medial exertions.

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Alan C. Cudlip, Steven L. Fischer, Richard Wells and Clark R. Dickerson

This study examined the influence of frequency and direction of force application on psychophysically acceptable forces for simulated work tasks. Fifteen male participants exerted psychophysically acceptable forces on a force transducer at 1, 3, or 5 repetitions per minute by performing both a downward press and a pull toward the body. These exertions were shown previously to be strength and balance limited, respectively. Workers chose acceptable forces at a lower percentage of their maximum voluntary force capacity during downward (strength-limited) exertions than during pulling (balance-limited) exertions at all frequencies (4% to 11%, P = .035). Frequency modulated acceptable hand force only during downward exertions, where forces at five repetitions per minute were 13% less (P = .005) than those at one exertion per minute. This study provides insight into the relationship between biomechanically limiting factors and the selection of acceptable forces for unilateral manual tasks.

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Alison C. McDonald, Elora C. Brenneman, Alan C. Cudlip and Clark R. Dickerson

As the modern workplace is dominated by submaximal repetitive tasks, knowledge of the effect of task location is important to ensure workers are unexposed to potentially injurious demands imposed by repetitive work in awkward or sustained postures. The purpose of this investigation was to develop a three-dimensional spatial map of the muscle activity for the right upper extremity during laterally directed submaximal force exertions. Electromyographic (EMG) activity was recorded from fourteen muscles surrounding the shoulder complex as the participants exerted 40N of force in two directions (leftward, rightward) at 70 defined locations. Hand position in both push directions strongly influenced total and certain individual muscle demands as identified by repeated measures analysis of variance (P < .001). During rightward exertions individual muscle activation varied from 1 to 21% MVE and during leftward exertions it varied from 1 to 27% MVE with hand location. Continuous prediction equations for muscular demands based on three-dimensional spatial parameters were created with explained variance ranging from 25 to 73%. The study provides novel information for evaluating existing and proactive workplace designs, and may help identify preferred geometric placements of lateral exertions in occupational settings to lower muscular demands, potentially mitigating fatigue and associated musculoskeletal risks.

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Angelica E. Lang, Soo Y. Kim, Stephan Milosavljevic and Clark R. Dickerson

Breast cancer survivors have known scapular kinematic alterations that may be related to the development of secondary morbidities. A measure of muscle activation would help understand the mechanisms behind potential harmful kinematics. The purpose of this study was to define muscle force strategies in breast cancer survivors. Shoulder muscle forces during 6 functional tasks were predicted for 25 breast cancer survivors (divided by impingement pain) and 25 controls using a modified Shoulder Loading Analysis Module. Maximum forces for each muscle were calculated, and 1-way analysis of variance (P < .05) was used to identify group differences. The differences between maximum predicted forces and maximum electromyography were compared with repeated-measures analysis of variance (P < .05) to evaluate the success of the model predictions. Average differences between force predictions and electromyography ranged from 7.3% to 31.6% but were within the range of previously accepted differences. Impingement related pain in breast cancer survivors is associated with increased force of select shoulder muscles. Both pectoralis major heads, upper trapezius, and supraspinatus peak forces were higher in the pain group across all tasks. These force prediction differences are also associated with potentially harmful kinematic strategies, providing a direction for possible rehabilitation strategies.