Effects of Transverse and Frontal Plane Knee Laxity on Hip and Knee Neuromechanics During Drop Landings

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Randy J. Schmitz, Associate Professor (Creator)
Sandra J. Shultz, Professor and Chair (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site: http://library.uncg.edu/

Abstract: Background Varus-valgus (LAXVV) and internal-external (LAXIER) rotational knee laxity have received attention as potential contributing factors in anterior cruciate ligament injury. This study compared persons with above-and below-average LAXVV and LAXIER values on hip and knee neuromechanics during drop jump landings.

Hypothesis People with greater LAXVV and LAXIER values will have greater challenges controlling frontal and transverse plane knee motions, as evidenced by greater joint excursions, joint moments, and muscle activation levels during the landing phase.

Study Design Descriptive laboratory study.

Methods Recreationally active participants (52 women and 44 men) between 18 and 30 years old were measured for LAXVV and LAXIER and for their muscle activation and transverse and frontal plane hip and knee kinetics and kinematics during the initial landing phase of a drop jump. The mean value was obtained for each sex, and those with above-average values on LAXVV and LAXIER (LAXHIGH = 17 women, 16 men) were compared with those with below-average values (LAXLOW = 18 women, 17 men).

Results Women with LAXHIGH verus LAXLOW were initially positioned in greater hip adduction and knee valgus and also produced more prolonged internal hip adduction and knee varus moments as they moved toward greater hip adduction and internal rotation as the landing progressed. These patterns in LAXHIGH women were accompanied by greater prelanding and postlanding muscle activation amplitudes. Men with LAXHIGH versus LAXLOW also demonstrated greater hip adduction motion and produced greater internal hip internal rotation and knee varus and internal rotation moments.

Conclusion Participants with greater LAXVV and LAXIER landed with greater hip and knee transverse and frontal plane hip and knee motions.

Clinical Relevance: People (especially, women) with increased frontal and transverse plane knee laxity demonstrate motions associated with noncontact anterior cruciate ligament injury mechanisms.

Additional Information

American Journal of Sports Medicine 2009; 37(9): 1821-1830.
Language: English
Date: 2009
Joints, Physiology, Knee joint, Jumps and landings

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