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Max C. Stuelcken, René E.D. Ferdinands, Karen A. Ginn and Peter J. Sinclair

This preliminary study aimed to quantify the magnitude of the peak shoulder distraction force during the bowling action of female cricket fast bowlers. An eight camera Vicon motion analysis system operating at 120 Hz recorded the fast bowling actions of 18 Australian female fast bowlers. A three segment inverse solution model of the bowling arm was used to calculate the shoulder distraction force. A large peak shoulder distraction force was recorded during the early stages of the follow-through of the bowling action. When normalized for body weight, the distraction force was within the range of values reported for baseball and softball pitchers, who are considered to be at high risk of shoulder injury. Therefore, the relative importance of the peak shoulder distraction force in the fast bowling action for the development of shoulder pain in female cricket fast bowlers warrants further investigation.

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Alasdair R. Dempsey, Bruce C. Elliott, Bridget J. Munro, Julie R. Steele and David G. Lloyd

Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injuries are costly. Sidestep technique training reduces knee moments that load the ACL. This study examined whether landing technique training alters knee moments. Nineteen team sport athletes completed the study. Motion analysis and ground reaction forces were recorded before and after 6 weeks of technique modification. An inverse dynamic model was used to calculate three-dimensional knee loading. Pre- and postintervention scores were compared using paired t tests. Maximal knee flexion angle during landing was increased following training. There was no change in valgus or flexion moments, but an increase in peak internal rotation moment. This increase in internal rotation moment may increase the risk of ACL injury. However, the increased angle at which the peak internal rotation moment occurred at follow up may mitigate any increase in injury risk by reducing load transmission.

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J. Craig Garrison, Joe M. Hart, Riann M. Palmieri, D. Casey Kerrigan and Christopher D. Ingersoll

Context:

Gender differences in muscle activity during landing have been studied as a possible contributing factor to the greater incidence of anterior cruciate ligament injuries in women.

Objective:

To compare root-mean-square (RMS) electromyography (EMG) of selected lower extremity muscles at initial contact (IC) and at peak knee internal-rotation (IR) moment in men and women during landing.

Design:

Preexperimental design static-group comparison.

Setting:

Motion-analysis laboratory.

Participants:

16 varsity college soccer players (8 men, 8 women).

Main Outcome Measures:

EMG activity of the gluteus medius, lateral hamstrings, vastus lateralis, and rectus femoris during landing.

Results:

When RMS EMG of all muscles was considered simultaneously, no significant differences were detected between genders at IC or at peak knee IR moment.

Conclusion:

Male and female college soccer players display similar relative muscle activities of the lower extremity during landing. Gender landing-control parameters might vary depending on the technique used to analyze muscle activity.

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John H. Challis

In three-dimensional image-based motion analysis, the direct linear transformation (DLT) is commonly used to measure locations of significant body landmarks. The major drawback of the DLT is that the control points used for calibration must encompass the volume in which the activity occurs. A new procedure is presented where the calibration frame is moved sequentially, permitting calibration of a volume much larger than that encompassed by the calibration frame. A calibration frame with a volume of 0.6 m3 was used to calibrate a volume six times greater, by placing the frame in eight different positions. Reconstruction accuracy was comparable with that for the original frame position. This new multiphase calibration procedure presents the opportunity for calibrating large volumes using a small calibration frame; this may be advantageous, for example, in sporting arenas, where the transportation or manufacture of a sufficiently large calibration frame may be problematic.

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Jennifer M. Medina McKeon, Craig R. Denegar and Jay Hertel

The purpose of this study was to formulate a predictive equation to discriminate males from females using static and dynamic lower extremity (LE) alignments. Twenty-four healthy adults volunteered to participate. Three-dimensional motion analysis was used to assess the kinematics of the right hip and knee during two functional tasks. Six measures of static LE alignment were also performed. Statistical comparisons were made between males and females for all variables. Static and dynamic variables that were significantly different by sex were entered into separate discriminant analyses for each task. The resulting equations were each able to correctly predict 87% of the subjects by sex. Fifty-eight percent and 55% of the variance was explained by sex for the vertical jump and plant & jump, respectively. The frontal plane hip angle was the best predictor of sex for both tasks. While there were statistically significant differences between the sexes for static measures of LE alignment, kinematic measures were better at discriminating between sexes.

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Arnel L. Aguinaldo, Janet Buttermore and Henry Chambers

High rotational torques during baseball pitching are believed to be linked to most overuse injuries at the shoulder. This study investigated the effects of trunk rotation on shoulder rotational torques during pitching. A total of 38 pitchers from the professional, college, high school, and youth ranks were recruited for motion analysis. Professional pitchers demonstrated the least amount of rotational torque (p = .001) among skeletally mature players, while exhibiting the ability to rotate their trunks significantly later in the pitching cycle, as compared to other groups (p = .01). It was concluded that the timing of their rotation was optimized as to allow the throwing shoulder to move with decreased joint loading by conserving the momentum generated by the trunk. These results suggest that a specific pattern in throwing can be utilized to increase the efficiency of the pitch, which would allow a player to improve performance with decreased risk of overuse injury.

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Glenn S. Fleisig, Rafael F. Escamilla, James R. Andrews, Tomoyuki Matsuo, Yvonne Satterwhite and Steve W. Barrentine

Kinematic and kinetic aspects of baseball pitching and football passing were compared. Twenty-six high school and collegiate pitchers and 26 high school and collegiate quarterbacks were analyzed using three-dimensional high-speed motion analysis. Although maximum shoulder external rotation occurred earlier for quarterbacks, maximum angular velocity of pelvis rotation, upper torso rotation, elbow extension, and shoulder internal rotation occurred earlier and achieved greater magnitude for pitchers. Quarterbacks had shorter strides and stood more erect at ball release. During arm cocking, quarterbacks demonstrated greater elbow flexion and shoulder horizontal adduction. To decelerate the arm, pitchers generated greater compressive force at the elbow and greater compressive force and adduction torque at the shoulder. These results may help explain differences in performance and injury rates between the two sports.

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Bruce Elliott, J. Robert Grove, Barry Gibson and B. Thurston

Three-dimensional (3-D) high speed photography was used to record the fastball (FB) and curveball (CB) actions of six members of the Australian National pitching squad. The direct linear transformation (DLT) method of motion analysis for 3-D space reconstruction from 2-D images was used to record the movement of selected anatomical features. Laterally positioned phase-locked cameras operating at 200 fps and a front-on camera operating at 300 fps were used to record the pitching action. Mean pitching velocities for the FB and the CB were recorded. A kinematic analysis of the two pitching motions from the first balance point following the completion of the pump and pivot to follow through are presented. The actions are very similar for the two pitches, as would be expected if disguised to confuse the batter. Minor differences were noted, however, for stride length, forearm action prior to release, and wrist action at release.

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Mickaël Begon and Patrick Lacouture

A marker has to be seen by at least two cameras for its three-dimensional (3-D) reconstruction, and the accuracy can be improved with more cameras. However, a change in the set of cameras used in the reconstruction can alter the kinematics. The purpose of this study was to quantify the harmful effect of occlusions on two-dimensional (2-D) images and to make recommendations about the signal processing. A reference kinematics data set was collected for a three degree-of-freedom linkage with three cameras of a commercial motion analysis system without any occlusion on the 2-D images. In the 2-D images, some occlusions were artificially created based on trials of real cyclic motions. An interpolation of 2-D trajectories before the 3-D reconstruction and two filters (Savitsky–Golay and Butterworth filters) after reconstruction were successively applied to minimize the effect of the 2-D occlusions. The filter parameters were optimized by minimizing the root mean square error between the reference and the filtered data. The optimal parameters of the filters were marker dependent, whereas no filter was necessary after a 2-D interpolation. As the occlusions cause systematic error in the 3-D reconstruction, the interpolation of the 2-D trajectories is more appropriate than filtering the 3-D trajectories.

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Andrej Olenšek, Zlatko Matjačić and Tadej Bajd

When studying pathological gait it is important to correctly identify primary gait anomalies originating from damage to the central nervous and musculoskeletal system and separate them from compensatory changes of gait pattern, which is often challenging due to the lack of knowledge related to biomechanics of pathological gait. A mechanical system consisting of specially designed trousers, special shoe arrangement, and elastic ropes attached to selected locations on the trousers and shoes is proposed to allow emulation of muscle contractures of soleus (SOL) and gastrocnemius (GAS) muscles and both SOL-GAS. The main objective of this study was to evaluate and compare gait variability as recorded in normal gait and when being constrained with the proposed system. Six neurologically and orthopedically intact volunteers walked along a 7-m walkway while gait kinematics and kinetics were recorded using VICON motion analysis system and two AMTI forceplates. Statistical analysis of coefficient of variation of kinematics and kinetics as recorded in normal walking and during the most constrained SOL-GAS condition showed comparable gait variability. Inspection of resulting group averaged gait patterns revealed considerable resemblance to a selected clinical example of spastic diplegia, indicating that the proposed mechanical system potentially represents a novel method for studying emulated pathological gait arising from artificially induced muscle contractures in neurologically intact individuals.