The purpose of this study was to determine the effect of the pelvic compression belt (PCB) on the electromyography (EMG) activities of trunk muscles during sit-to-stand (SitTS), and stand-to-sit (StandTS) tasks. Twenty healthy subjects (7 men and 13 women) were recruited for this study. The subjects performed SitTS, and StandTS tasks, with and without a PCB. Surface EMG was used to record activity of the internal oblique (IO), external oblique (EO), rectus abdominis (RA), erector spinae (ES), and multifidus (MF) of the dominant limb. EMG activity significantly decreased in the RA (without the PCB, %maximal voluntary isometric contraction [%MVIC]; with the PCB, %MVIC), EO (without the PCB, %MVIC; with the PCB, %MVIC), MF (without the PCB, %MVIC; with the PCB, %MVIC), and ES (without the PCB, %MVIC; with the PCB, %MVIC) during the SitTS task and in the IO (without the PCB, %MVIC; with the PCB, %MVIlC), RA (without the PCB, %MVIC; with the PCB, %MVIC), EO (without the PCB, %MVIC; with the PCB, %MVIC), MF (without the PCB, %MVIC; with the PCB, %MVIC), and ES (without the PCB, %MVIC; with the PCB, %MVIC) during the StandTS task when a PCB was used (p<.05). In men the EMG activity of the MF significantly decreased during the SitTS task when a PCB was used (p<.05): in women, the EMG activity of the RA, EO, MF, and ES during the SitTS task and that of the EO, MF, and ES during the SitTS task significantly decreased when a PCB was used (p<.05). In addition, the rates of change in the EMG activity of each muscle differed significantly during the SitTS and StandTS tasks before and after the use of the PCB. However, the EMG activity did not significantly differ between the male and female subjects. These findings suggest that the PCB may contribute to the modification of activation patterns of the trunk muscles during SitTS, and StandTS tasks.
The purpose of this study was to assess the influence of the duration of smartphone usage on cervical and lumbar spine flexion angles and reposition error in the cervical spine. The study included 18 healthy smartphone users (7 males and 11 females). We measured the kinematics of the upper and lower cervical and lumbar spine flexion angles and the reposition error of the upper and lower cervical spine after 3 s and 300 s smartphone use in sitting. A paired t-test was used to compare the effects of the duration of smartphone usage on the kinematics of cervical and lumbar spine flexion angles and reposition error. The flexion angles of the lower cervical and lumbar spine and the reposition error in the upper and lower cervical spine were significantly increased after 300 s smartphone of use (p<.05). However, the flexion angle of the upper cervical spine was not significantly different between the 3 s and 300 s smartphone of use (p>.05). These findings suggest that prolonged use of smartphones can induce changes in cervical and lumbar spine posture and proprioception in the cervical spine.
The purpose of this study was to compare the ring lock type knee-ankle-foot orthosis (KAFO) with newly developed 4-bar linkage KAFO on the gait characteristics of persons with poliomyelitis clinically. This 4-bar linkage is the stance control type KAFO which provide the stability during stance phase and knee flexion during swing phase. Two subjects participated in this study voluntarily. We provided the customized 4-bar linkage KAFO then asked the subjects to walk in level surface and stairs under the two different KAFO conditions. The characteristics of gait in the persons with poliomyelitis were evaluated using a 3D motion analysis system and force plate. Additionally 6 minute walk test for physiological cost index were conducted using pulse oximeter to measure the energy consumption. In the results of this study, the differences of 4-bar linkage KAFO compared with ring lock type KAFO are as follows: (1) Walking speed, stride length, and step length on level increased in subjects, (2) The gait symmetry was improved by generated knee flexion and decreased pelvic external rotation on level and stairs walking, (3) Decreased vertical excursion of center of mass and pelvic elevation during swing phase was decreased on level, (4) Knee extension moment, hip flexion moment, hip and knee internal rotation moment of non-braced limb were decreased on level walking, (5) Walking speed in 6-minute walk test was increased and physiological cost index was decreased. These findings indicate that 4-bar linkage KAFO compared with ring lock type KAFO is effective in enhancing pattern, endurance, and energy consumption in level surface and stairs walking.
The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of warm-up and cool-down exercises on pain and muscle activation of delayed onset muscle soreness after intense exercise. Delayed onset muscle soreness was caused by the eccentric exercise in the elbow flexor muscle of the non-dominant upper limb. Forty-four subjects volunteered to participate in this study and were randomly assigned to one of the following groups: warm-up and cool-down group, only warm-up group, only cool-down group, or control group with no intervention. The level of perceived pain using the visual analogue scale and electromyographic activation change in maximal voluntary isometric contraction were measured 4 times at the following times: 10 min, 24 hr, 48 hr, and 72 hr after the exercise. The results revealed the main effect between the groups and interaction effect between the group and measurement session (p<.05). The warm-up and cool-down group showed most favorable results with respect to reduced perceived pain level and increased muscle strength in most measurement sessions, and the only warm-up group showed significantly more decreased pain level than the control group at 24 hr and 48 hr and more increased muscle activation than the cool-down group at 48 hr (p<.05). However, there were no significant differences in pain level and muscle activation between the only cool-down group and control group at all measurement sessions (p>.05). The findings suggest that the warm-up exercise performed before an intense exercise had beneficial effects on the symptoms of delayed onset muscle soreness, whereas cool-down exercise performed after the intense exercise did not.
This study examined the effects of a physical therapy program on quality of life (QOL), and neck and shoulder disability in head and neck cancer patients. The program included neck and shoulder range of motion (ROM) exercises, massage, progressive strengthening exercises, and stretching exercises. Sixteen patients who were assigned to an experimental group performed physical therapy for 40 minutes three times a week for eight weeks. Fifteen other patients were assigned to a control group who did not performed the physical therapy program. The European organization for research and treatment of cancer (EORTC QLQ-C30) and head and neck (EORTC QLQ-H&N) instruments, and the Neck Disability Index (NDI) were assessed before and after the rehabilitation program. The 40-minute program consisted of a 10-minute ROM exercise for the neck and shoulder, a 10-minute massage and 15-minute of progressive resistance exercises, followed by a five-minute stretching exercises. Statistically significant differences were noted for changes in global health, physical function in the EORTC QLQ-C30 and cancer related symptoms in the EORTC QLQ-H&N35 (p<.05). The NDI also showed significant differences (p<.05). Physical therapy may therefore benefit the physical aspects and QOL and improve neck and shoulder disability in patients with head and neck cancer.
The purpose of this study was to compare the immediate effects of upper trapezius muscle stretching in more tensed position (MTP) and less tensed position (LTP) on the change of range of motion (ROM) for neck rotation, and the ROM for conjunct neck motions at end-range of neck rotation toward the painful side in patients with unilateral neck pain. Eighteen patients with unilateral neck pain were recruited for the study's MTP group, and 18 age-, weight- and gender-matched patients with unilateral neck pain were recruited for LTP group. The ROM changes in active neck primary and conjunct motions were measured using a cervical ROM inclinometer in the sitting position. Our results showed that both upper trapezius stretching method in MTP and LTP were significantly effective in increasing the ROM of neck rotation toward painful side in patients with unilateral neck pain. However, a significantly greater increase in the ROM for neck rotation and a further decrease in conjunct neck extension during neck rotation toward the painful side were shown in MTP group, compared to LTP group. The upper trapezius stretching in MTP is useful in increasing the ROM of neck rotation and decreasing the range of conjunct neck extension during neck rotation toward the painful side in patients with unilateral neck pain.
This study investigated the effects of axillary crutch length on trunk muscle activity and lumbo-pelvic-hip complex movements during crutch gait. Eleven healthy men participated in this study. The participants performed a three-point gait with optimal, shorter, and longer crutch lengths. Weight-bearing (WB) side was determined as the dominant leg side. The electromyography (EMG) activity of the bilateral rectus abdominis (RA) and erector spinae (ES) muscles and lumbo-pelvic-hip complex movements were monitored using a three-dimensional motion system with wireless surface EMG. Differences in the EMG activity of RA and ES muscles and range of motion (ROM) of lumbar spine, pelvis, and hip among conditions were analyzed using one-way repeated-measures analysis of variance, and a Bonferroni correction was conducted. There was less RA muscle activity on the WB side under the optimal crutch length condition compared with shorter and longer crutch length conditions (p<.05). The EMG activity of the RA muscle on the non-WB side and ES muscle on the WB side were significantly decreased under the optimal crutch length condition compared with shorter crutch length condition (p<.05). No significant differences in the EMG activity of the ES muscle on the non-WB side and ROM of lumbo-pelvic-hip complex were found among conditions (p>.05). These findings indicate that the optimal crutch length improves the trunk muscle efficiency during crutch gait.
The purposes of this study were to develop a new orthosis controlling ankle and knee joint motion during the gait cycle and to identify the effects of the newly designed orthosis on gait kinematics and tempospatial parameters, including coordination of the extremities in stroke patients. Fifteen individuals who had sustained a stroke, onset was 16 months, participated in this study. Before application of the measurement equipment the subjects were accustomed to walking on the ankle-foot orthosis (AFO) or stance control knee with knee flexion assisted-oil damper ankle-foot orthosis (SCKAFO) for 5 minutes. Fifteen patients were investigated for 45 days with a 3-day interval between sessions. Measurements were walking in fifteen stroke with hemiparesis on the 3D motion analysis system. Comparison of AFO and SCKAFO are gait pattern. The difference between the AFO and SCKAFO conditions was significant in the gait velocity, step length of the right affected side, stance time of both legs, step-length asymmetry ratio, single-support-time asymmetry ratio, -thigh angle and -shank angle in the mid swing (p<.001). Using a SCKAFO in stroke patients has shown similar to normal walking speeds can be attained for walking efficiency and is therefore desirable. In this study, the support time of the affected leg with the SCKAFO was longer than with the AFO and the asymmetry ratio of single support time decreased by more than with the AFO. This indicates that the SCKAFO was effective for improving gait symmetry, single-support-time symmetry. This may be due to the decrease of gait asymmetry. Thus, the newly designed SCKAFO may be useful for promoting gait performance by improving the coordination of the extremity and decreasing gait asymmetry in chronic stroke patients.
We evaluated whether group locomotor imagery training-combined knowledge of performance (KP) lead to improvements in gait function in community dwelling individuals with chronic stroke. Ten adults who had suffered a hemiparetic stroke at least 6 months earlier participated in group locomotor imagery training-combined KP for 5 weeks, twice per week, with 2 h intensive training. Dynamic gait index scores increased significantly after the group locomotor imagery training-combined KP. However, times for the timed up-and-go test did not improve significantly after the training. Group locomotor imagery training-combined KP may be a useful option for the relearning of gait performance for community dwelling individuals with chronic hemiparetic stroke.