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A method for comparing manual muscle strength measurements with joint moments during walking

Fosang, A and Baker, RJ 2006, 'A method for comparing manual muscle strength measurements with joint moments during walking' , Gait & Posture, 24 (4) , pp. 406-411.

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This paper describes a protocol for dynamometer assisted manual muscle testing of the major muscle groups of the lower extremity and its application to 11 able-bodied children who also had conventional gait analysis to obtain joint kinetics. Data from the manual muscle testing was processed in such a way that the results for maximum muscle strength (grade 5) and resistance against gravity alone (grade 3) were presented in N m/kg allowing direct comparison with conventional joint kinetics. The strength measurements of the hip muscles and the knee extensors were between two and three times the moments exerted during normal walking. Those of the knee flexors and dorsiflexors were about five times the joint moments. Measured plantarflexor strength was only just greater than the moment exerted during walking. These results, particularly those for the plantarflexors, question how valid it is to use measures of isometric muscle strength as indicators of muscle function during activity. The study also compares grade 3 muscle strength with both grade 5 strength and the maximum joint moments. For all muscle groups tested grade 3 muscle strength was less than the maximum moment exerted during normal walking. For the plantarflexors it was less than 1% of that moment. The study demonstrates that reliable isometric muscle testing is possible in able-bodied children but requires considerable care and is time consuming. More work is required to understand how measurements made in this way relate to how muscles function during activity.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Gait analysis, muscle strength, kinetics, dynamometry
Themes: Health and Wellbeing
Schools: Colleges and Schools > College of Health & Social Care
Colleges and Schools > College of Health & Social Care > School of Health Sciences
Journal or Publication Title: Gait & Posture
Publisher: Elsevier
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 09666362
Depositing User: RH Shuttleworth
Date Deposited: 04 Jul 2011 11:31
Last Modified: 20 Aug 2013 16:59

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