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Shiho Goto, Naoko Aminaka, and Phillip A. Gribble

Context : Altered lower-extremity muscle activity has been associated with lower-extremity kinematics in individuals with patellofemoral pain (PFP). However, few studies have examined these relationships, and the results are inconsistent. Objective: To compare the lower-extremity muscle activity, kinematics, pain level, and reach distance during the anterior reach of the star excursion balance test (SEBT) between participants with PFP and healthy individuals (control [CON] group). Design: Case control. Setting: Research laboratory. Participants: Twenty-eight (PFP = 14 and CON = 14) participants volunteered. Intervention: Each participant performed 3 maximal voluntary isometric contractions of the gluteus maximus, gluteus medius (GMED), adductor longus (AL), and vastus medialis, and 5 anterior reaches of the SEBT. Main Outcome Measures: Three-dimensional joint kinematics of the hip and knee at the time of touchdown of the SEBT and integrated electromyography of each muscle were recorded during the descent phase of the SEBT. Coactivation ratios between the GMED and AL were calculated (GMED/AL). Pain level was assessed at the baseline and during performance of the SEBT, using a visual analog scale. Results: Participants with PFP demonstrated decreased GMED/AL coactivation ratio (P = .01) and shorter reach distance (P = .01) during anterior reach of the SEBT compared with the CON group. Participants with PFP demonstrated higher pain levels at baseline (P = .03) and during test performance (P < .001) compared with the CON group and increased pain level during the test performance compared with the baseline (P < .001). No other significant differences were observed. Conclusions: There were alterations in muscle activity during SEBT performance, suggesting that overactivity of AL relative to GMED is a unique neural recruitment pattern in those with PFP. However, hip and knee joint kinematics did not seem to contribute to deficits in the anterior reach distance, suggesting a need for continued assessment of these deficiencies.

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Adam Culiver, J. Craig Garrison, Kalyssa M. Creed, John E. Conway, Shiho Goto, and Sherry Werner

Context: Numerous studies have reported kinematic data on baseball pitchers using three-dimensional (3D) motion analysis, but no studies to date have correlated this data with clinical outcome measures. Objective: To examine the relationship among Y-Balance Test–Lower Quarter (YBT-LQ) composite scores, musculoskeletal characteristics of the hip, and pitching kinematics in National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I baseball pitchers. Design: Cross-sectional. Setting: 3D motion analysis laboratory. Participants: Nineteen healthy male college baseball pitchers. Main Outcome Measures: Internal and external hip passive range of motion, hip abduction strength, YBT-LQ composite scores, and kinematic variables of the pitching motion. Results: Stride length demonstrated a moderate positive correlation with dominant limb YBT-LQ composite score (r = .524, P = .02) and nondominant limb YBT-LQ composite score (r = .550, P = .01), and a weak positive correlation with normalized time to maximal humerus velocity (r = .458, P = .04). Stride length had a moderate negative correlation with normalized time to maximal thorax velocity (r = −.522, P = .02) and dominant hip total rotational motion (TRM; r = −.660, P = .002), and had a strong negative correlation with normalized time from stride foot contact to maximal knee flexion (r = −.722, P < .001). Dominant limb YBT-LQ composite score had a weak negative correlation with hip abduction strength difference (r = −.459, P = .04) and normalized time to maximal thorax velocity (r = −.468, P = .04). Nondominant limb YBT-LQ composite score demonstrated a weak negative correlation with normalized time to maximal thorax velocity (r = −.450, P = .05) and had a moderate negative correlation with dominant hip TRM (r = −.668, P = .001). There were no other significant relationships between the remaining variables. Conclusions: YBT-LQ is a clinical measure that can be used to correlate with hip musculoskeletal characteristics and pitching kinematics in NCAA Division I pitchers.

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Joseph Hannon, J. Craig Garrison, Sharon Wang-Price, Shiho Goto, Angellyn Grondin, James Bothwell, and Curtis Bush

Context: Joint loading following anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction (ACL-R) is thought to influence long-term outcomes. However, our understanding of the role of meniscus repair at the time of ACL-R on early joint loading is limited. Objective: To assess if differences in total energy absorption and energy absorption contribution of the hip, knee, and ankle exist in the early stages of rehabilitation between patients who received an isolated ACL-R and those with concomitant meniscal repairs. Design: Cross-sectional. Setting: Clinical laboratory. Patients: Fifty-nine human subjects, including 27 who underwent ACL-R and 32 who underwent ACL-R with concomitant meniscal repairs. Main Outcome Measure: The total energy absorption and the energy absorption contribution of each joint of both the involved and uninvolved limbs during a double-limb squat task. Results: There were significant differences in energy absorption contribution between groups at the knee joint (P = .01) and the hip joint (P = .04), but not at the ankle joint (P = .48) of the involved limb. Post hoc analysis indicates that preoperative hip and knee loading differences exist and when you control for preoperative loading (analysis of covariance), the postsurgery difference was not significant. Conclusions: The results of the study suggest that the additional surgical procedure of MR may not have had negative effects on joint loading during squatting at 12 weeks.

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Jason D. Stone, Adam C. King, Shiho Goto, John D. Mata, Joseph Hannon, James C. Garrison, James Bothwell, Andrew R. Jagim, Margaret T. Jones, and Jonathan M. Oliver

Purpose: To provide a joint-level analysis of traditional (TS) and cluster (CS) set structure during the back-squat exercise. Methods: Eight men (24 [3] y, 177.3 [7.9] cm, 82.7 [11.0] kg, 11.9 [3.5] % body fat, and 150.3 [23.0] kg 1-repetition maximum [1RM]) performed the back-squat exercise (80%1RM) using TS (4 × 6, 2-min interset rest) and CS (4 × [2 × 3], 30-s intraset rest, 90-s interset rest), randomly. Lower-limb kinematics were collected by motion capture, as well as kinetic data by bilateral force platforms. Results: CS attenuated the loss in mean power (TS −21.6% [3.9%]; CS −12.4% [7.5%]; P = .042), although no differences in gross movement pattern (sagittal-plane joint angles) within and between conditions were observed (P ≥ .05). However, joint power produced at the hip increased from repetition (REP) 1 through REP 6 during TS, while a decrease was noted at the knee. A similar pattern was observed in the CS condition but was limited to the hip. Joint power produced at the hip increased from REP 1 through REP 3 but returned to REP 1 values before a similar increase through REP 6, resulting in differences between conditions (REP 4, P = .018; REP 5, P = .022). Conclusions: Sagittal-plane joint angles did not change in either condition, although CS elicited greater power. Differing joint power contributions (hip and knee) suggest potential central mechanism that may contribute to enhanced power output during CS and warrant further study. Practitioners should consider incorporating CS into training to promote greater power adaptations and to mitigate fatigue.