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Kuangyou B. Cheng

The effect of joint strengthening on standing vertical jump height is investigated by computer simulation. The human model consists of five rigid segments representing the feet, shanks, thighs, HT (head and trunk), and arms. Segments are connected by frictionless revolute joints and model movement is driven by joint torque actuators. Each joint torque is the product of maximum isometric torque and three variable functions of instantaneous joint angle, angular velocity, and activation level, respectively. Jumping movements starting from a balanced initial posture and ending at takeoff are simulated. A matching simulation reproducing the actual jumping movement is generated by optimizing joint activation level. Simulations with the goal of maximizing jump height are repeated for varying maximum isometric torque of one joint by up to ±20% while keeping other joint strength values unchanged. Similar to previous studies, reoptimization of activation after joint strengthening is necessary for increasing jump height. The knee and ankle are the most effective joints in changing jump height (by as much as 2.4%, or 3 cm). For the same amount of percentage increase/decrease in strength, the shoulder is the least effective joint (which changes height by as much as 0.6%), but its influence should not be overlooked.

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David Hawkins and Mark Smeulders

The purpose of this study was to determine if the Hill model, used to describe the force-velocity relationship for isolated tetanically stimulated muscle, could be modified and used to describe the torque-velocity behavior of the knee for maximally and submaximally stimulated quadriceps and hamstrings muscles. Fourteen subjects performed both knee flexion and extension movements at 100%, 70%, and 40% of maximum isometric effort. For each effort level, the knee was allowed to move against resistances equal to 75%, 50%, 25%, and 0% of the specified effort level. An electrogoniometer quantified knee angle. Knee velocity was determined by numerically differentiating the joint angle data. Torque-velocity-activation (or effort level) data were determined for each trial. Model parameters were determined to give the best fit to the data for each subject. Average parameter values were determined for each gender and for the entire group. The modified Hill-type model accurately described the relationship between torque, velocity, and muscle activation level for subject-specific parameters but not for parameters averaged across genders or the entire group.

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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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Jaimie A. Roper, Ryan T. Roemmich, Mark D. Tillman, Matthew J. Terza and Chris J. Hass

Interventions that manipulate gait speed may also affect the control of frontal plane mechanics. Expanding the current knowledge of frontal plane adaptations during split-belt treadmill walking could advance our understanding of the influence of asymmetries in gait speed on frontal plane mechanics and provide insight into the breadth of adaptations required by split-belt walking (SBW). Thirteen young, healthy participants, free from lower extremity injury walked on a split-belt treadmill with belts moving simultaneously at different speeds. We examined frontal plane mechanics of the ankle, knee, and hip joints during SBW, as well as medio-lateral ground reaction forces (ML-GRF). We did not observe alterations in the frontal mechanics produced during early or late adaptation of SBW when compared to conditions where the belts moved together. We did observe that ML-GRF and hip moment impulse of the fast limb increased over time with adaptation to SBW. These results suggest this modality may provide a unique therapy for individuals with gait pathologies, impairments, or compensation(s).

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John D. McCamley, Eric L. Cutler, Kendra K. Schmid, Shane R. Wurdeman, Jason M. Johanning, Iraklis I. Pipinos and Sara A. Myers

width compared with their healthy counterparts 8 ; these are present from the first steps the patient takes before he or she experiences any claudication symptoms. 9 , 10 Similarly, several studies have revealed altered or abnormal joint torques and powers, particularly at the ankle and hip, for PAD

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Deborah Hebling Spinoso, Nise Ribeiro Marques, Dain Patrick LaRoche, Camilla Zamfollini Hallal, Aline Harumi Karuka, Fernanda Cristina Milanezi and Mauro Gonçalves

, & Maganaris, 2008 ; Samuel, Rowe, & Nicol, 2013 ). Functional demand is described as the percentage of maximal strength that is used during a task, which is usually determined by recording peak joint torques (moments) during ambulatory activities and expressing them as a percentage of maximal voluntary

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Sarah A. Roelker, Elena J. Caruthers, Rachel K. Hall, Nicholas C. Pelz, Ajit M.W. Chaudhari and Robert A. Siston

some have suggested that SO is the superior optimization technique for estimating muscle function in human locomotion due to its robustness and computational efficiency. 22 , 23 However, joint torques determined from CMC activations using the forward integration of muscle contraction dynamics more

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Margaret K.Y. Mak, Oron Levin, Joseph Mizrahi and Christina W.Y. Hui-Chan

Calculation of joint torques during the rising phase of sit-to-stand motion is in most cases indeterminate, due to the unknown thighs/chair reaction forces in addition to the other sources of uncertainties such as joint positioning and anthropometric data. In the present study we tested the reliability of computation of the joint torques from a five-segment model; we used force plate data of thighs/chair and feet/ground reaction forces, in addition to kinematic measurements. While solving for joint torques before and after seat-off, differences between model solutions and measured data were calculated and minimized using an iterative algorithm for the reestimation of joint positioning and anthropometric properties. The above method was demonstrated for a group of six normal elderly persons.

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Gerald L. Gottlieb

Muscle stress is plainly one of the physical variables that the central nervous system probably wishes to minimize. This criterion does not uniquely define the patterns of muscle activation. It fails to explain the degree of coactivation of muscle antagonists that is widely found, and it cannot explain why two movements or movement segments that follow an identical trajectory driven by identical joint torques can be driven by different patterns of muscle activation. Muscle contraction provides for both net joint torque and limb stability. The minimization of the sum of muscle stresses, raised to any power, is an insufficient rule.