Analysis of Muscle Activity and Ankle Joint Movement During the Side-Hop Test

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Yoshida, M, Taniguchi, K, and Katayose, M. Analysis of muscle activity and ankle joint movement during the side-hop test. J Strength Cond Res 25(8): 2255-2264, 2011—Functional performance tests (FPTs) that consist of movements, such as hopping, landing, and cutting, provide useful measurements. Although some tests have been established for kinematic studies of the knee joint, very few tests have been established for the ankle joint. To use the FPT as a test battery for patients with an ankle sprain, it is necessary to document typical patterns of muscle activation and range of motion (ROM) of the ankle joint during FPTs. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to investigate the pattern of the ROM of the ankle inversion/eversion and the muscle activity of the peroneus longus muscle (PL) and the tibial anterior muscle (TA) in normal subjects during the side-hop test. To emphasize the characteristics of ROM and electromyography (EMG) at each phase, the side-hop tests were divided into 4 phases: lateral-hop contact phase (LC), lateral-hop flight phase (LF), medial hop contact phase (MC), and medial hop flight phase (MF), and the ROM of ankle inversion/eversion, a peak angle of ankle inversion, and Integral EMG (IEMG) of PL and TA compared among 4 phases. Fifteen male subjects with no symptoms of ankle joint problems participated in this research. The ROM of ankle inversion/eversion during the side-hop test was 27 ± 3.8° (mean ± SD), and there was a significant difference in the ROM of ankle inversion/eversion among 4 phases (p < 0.05). The phase in which the widest ROM was presented was the MF. A peak angle of the ankle inversion at MC was significantly greater than at LC and MF (p <0.05). A peak angle of the ankle inversion at LF was significantly greater than at LC and MF. The PL remained contracting with 50-160% of maximal voluntary contraction (MVC). The IEMGs of PL in both the contact phases were significantly greater than in both the flight phases (p < 0.05). In addition, the PL activity at LC was significantly greater than at MC. The TA remained contracting at 50-80% of MVC through the side-hop test. The IEMG of TA at both the contact phases was significantly greater than at 2 flight phases. However, there was no significant difference between LC and MF. Results of this study could be useful as basic data when evaluating the validity of the side-hop test for patients with ankle sprain.

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