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Kenny Guex, Francois Fourchet, Heiko Loepelt and Gregoire P. Millet

Context:

A passive knee-extension test has been shown to be a reliable method of assessing hamstring tightness, but this method does not take into account the potential effect of gravity on the tested leg.

Objective:

To compare an original passive knee-extension test with 2 adapted methods including gravity’s effect on the lower leg.

Design:

Repeated measures.

Setting:

Laboratory.

Participants:

20 young track and field athletes (16.6 ± 1.6 y, 177.6 ± 9.2 cm, 75.9 ± 24.8 kg).

Intervention:

Each subject was tested in a randomized order with 3 different methods: In the original one (M1), passive knee angle was measured with a standard force of 68.7 N (7 kg) applied proximal to the lateral malleolus. The second (M2) and third (M3) methods took into account the relative lower-leg weight (measured respectively by handheld dynamometer and anthropometrical table) to individualize the force applied to assess passive knee angle.

Main Outcome Measures:

Passive knee angles measured with video-analysis software.

Results:

No difference in mean individualized applied force was found between M2 and M3, so the authors assessed passive knee angle only with M2. The mean knee angle was different between M1 and M2 (68.8 ± 12.4 vs 73.1 ± 10.6, P < .001). Knee angles in M1 and M2 were correlated (r = .93, P < .001).

Conclusions:

Differences in knee angle were found between the original passive knee-extension test and a method with gravity correction. M2 is an improved version of the original method (M1) since it minimizes the effect of gravity. Therefore, we recommend using it rather than M1.

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Kornelius Kraus, Elisabeth Kraus, Boris Gojanovic and Francois Fourchet

Context: The validity and reliability of manual goniometry is highly dependent on the examiner’s expertise. Technological advances can overcome these problems to some extent. Inertial goniometry, for instance, could bridge the gap between 2D and manual goniometry, but its validity remains to be studied. Participants: 40 healthy individuals (mean ± SD: 31 men, age = 23.9 ± 4.1 years, 184 ± 6 cm, 80.7 ± 10.0 kg; 9 women, age = 23.6 ± 3.6 years, 170 ± 4 cm, 60.6 ± 5.1 kg). Measurements: 2D and inertial goniometry by mobee med were used to measure active and passive single straight-leg raise mobility performance. Intracorrelation coefficients (ICCs) and typical error of the estimate (TEE) inform the reliability and quality of the measurement by the rater. Results: The relationship of the inertial goniometry for active and passive mobility of the single straight-leg raise was practically perfect (r = .95–.98). Based on the Bland-Altman plots, the means of the difference between the 2D and inertial based goniometry were small (2–3°). Conclusion: Due to its high concurrent validity, ease of use, and efficiency with regard to time and personnel requirements, this inertial goniometer device is an effective and efficient approach to measuring range of motion. However, additional validity and reliability studies should investigate joints with more degrees of freedom.

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François Fourchet, Cosmin Horobeanu, Heiko Loepelt, Redha Taiar and Grégoire P. Millet

Edited by Michael G. Dolan