Now showing 1 - 10 of 24
  • Publication
    Objective Classification of Dynamic Balance Using a Single Wearable Sensor
    (SCITEPRESS – Science and Technology Publications, 2016-11-09) ; ; ; ; ;
    The Y Balance Test (YBT) is one of the most commonly used dynamic balance assessments in clinical and research settings. This study sought to investigate the ability of a single lumbar inertial measurement unit (IMU) to discriminate between the three YBT reach directions, and between pre and post-fatigue balance performance during the YBT. Fifteen subjects (age: 234, weight: 67.58, height: 1758, BMI: 222) were fitted with a lumbar IMU. Three YBTs were performed on the dominant leg at 0, 10 and 20 minutes. A modified Wingate fatiguing intervention was conducted to introduce a balance deficit. This was followed immediately by three post-fatigue YBTs. Features were extracted from the IMU, and used to train and evaluate the random-forest classifiers. Reach direction classification achieved an accuracy of 97.80%, sensitivity of 97.860.89% and specificity of 98.900.56%. Normal and abnormal balance performance, as influenced by fatigue, was classified with an accuracy of 61.90%-71.43%, sensitivity of 61.90%-69.04% and specificity of 61.90%-78.57% depending on which reach direction was chosen. These results demonstrate that a single lumbar IMU is capable of accurately distinguishing between the different YBT reach directions and can classify between pre and post-fatigue balance with moderate levels of accuracy.
      828Scopus© Citations 16
  • Publication
    Star Excursion Balance Test performance and application in elite junior rugby union players
    Objectives: To evaluate performance on selected reach directions of the Start Excursion Balance Test (SEBT) in an elite underage rugby union population, and determine if differences exist between the forward and back position units. This information may have implications for the application of this test in player injury prevention and management. Design: Descriptive study. Setting: Gymnasium at an elite junior rugby union screening camp. Participants: 102 healthy male elite rugby union players (age = 17.9 ± 1.1 years, height = 1.83 ± 0.07 m, body mass = 90.5 ± 11.3 kg). Main outcome measures: Participants were assessed on the Anterior (A), Posterior-medial (PM), and Posterior-lateral (PL) reach directions of the SEBT. Results: Normative data for SEBT performance in the A, PM and PL reach directions were established for an elite junior rugby union population. No significant differences in dynamic postural stability were observed between the forward and back position units. Conclusions: This study provides normative SEBT data on an elite junior rugby union population, which enables clinicians to compare player dynamic postural stability and has implications for use in the prevention and management of player injuries.
      3146Scopus© Citations 11
  • Publication
    Dynamic balance performance varies by position but not by age group in elite Rugby Union players a normative study
    This cohort study aimed to provide normative Y Balance Test scores for an elite Rugby Union population, while investigating the effect player age groups (senior/under-20), playing positions (forwards/backs) and anthropometrics (height and body mass) had on performance. Two-hundred and sixty-one elite male under-20 (n = 50) and senior (n = 211) players completed baseline Y Balance Test during the 2015/2016 season. One-way ANCOVA and post-hoc t-tests were used to investigate the effect playing position, player group, height and weight had on performance. The cohort was then stratified into groups (age group and/or playing position), and normative percentiles were presented. There was a statistically significant difference (p < 0.05) in Y Balance Test performance between playing positions, when controlling for age group. This difference did not remain when controlling for player body mass. Post-hoc analysis demonstrated that backs had a longer normalised reach distance, with medium-large and small-medium effect sizes for the under-20 and senior cohorts respectively. The one-way ANCOVA analysis suggests that this difference is likely due to the larger differences in player body mass between forward and back playing positions. The normative values presented in this paper may be used by clinicians and researchers to aid injury prevention and rehabilitation strategies.
      760Scopus© Citations 7
  • Publication
    Inertial sensory data provides depth to clinical measures of dynamic balance
    Objectives: Establish the role a single inertial sensor may play in the objective quantification of dynamic postural stability following acute ankle injuries.Background The Y Balance test (YBT) is one of the most commonly utilised clinical dynamic balance assessments. Research has demonstrated the utility of the YBT in identifying balance deficits in those with acute ankle injuries and chronic ankle instability. However, reach distances fail to provide information relating to the quality of balance strategy and dynamic stability. Motion capture systems are often employed to provide micro-level detail pertaining to an individuals postural stability. However, such systems are expensive, lack accessibility, hinder natural movement and require extensive processing expertise. The addition of inertial sensors may allow for the inexpensive, accessible quantification of postural stability in an unconstrained environment.Case Description Forty-two elite under-20 rugby union players were recruited as part of a wider study. Two athletes were identified to have sustained acute ankle injuries two weeks previously; one lateral ankle sprain and one deltoid ligament sprain. A single inertial sensor was mounted at the level of the 4th lumbar vertebra. Participants completed four practice YBTs bilaterally, prior to completing 3 recorded YBTs. Reach distance and inertial sensor data were recorded for each reach excursion.Outcomes When compared to the group mean, both athletes demonstrated no clinically meaningful reduction in reach distances for all three reach directions. However, both athletes demonstrated a higher 95% ellipsoid volume of sway than the healthy control group for all three directions of the YBT when completed on their affected limb.Conclusions Preliminary analysis suggests that inertial sensor data may provide information relating to the quality of dynamic postural stability following an acute ankle injury. Further investigation is required to establish the role that such measures may play in the assessment and management of ankle injuries.
  • Publication
    Neuromuscular electrical stimulation exercise: a potential alternative to conventional exercise in the management of type 2 diabetes
    Aims: Exercise is fundamental in the prevention and treatmentof type 2 diabetes (T2D). However, many individualsface barriers to exercise. Neuromuscular electrical stimulation(NMES) is an alternative to conventional exercise that mayprove beneficial in the treatment of T2D. The aim of thisstudy was to investigate the effects of an 8-week NMESexercise programme in a T2D population.Methods: A repeated measures one-group cohort interventionstudy was conducted. Thirteen T2D participants (age 52.06.9years, height 1.790.06 m, weight 104.511.9 kg, BMI 32.84.3kg/m2) underwent an 8-week NMES intervention. Venousblood markers, body composition, blood pressure, quadricepsstrength and predicted maximal oxygen consumption wereassessed at baseline and after the 8-week intervention.Results: Significant improvements in fasting plasma glucose,percentage body fat and peak isometric quadriceps torquewere noted following the intervention (p<0.05).Conclusions: The principal findings of this study were thatNMES can improve body composition, muscle strength andglycaemic control in T2D participants. NMES may thereforeprovide an alternative to those individuals with T2D whohave barriers to exercise participation. Further randomisedcontrolled trials with larger participant numbers are requiredto investigate this further.
      531Scopus© Citations 5
  • Publication
    Concussion recovery evaluation using the inertial sensor instrumented Y Balance Test
    The current sports concussion assessment paradigm lacks reliability, has learning effects and is not sufficiently challenging for athletes. As a result, subtle deficits in sensorimotor function may be unidentified, increasing the risk of future injury. This study examined if the inertial-sensor instrumented Y Balance test could capture concussion induced alterations in dynamic movement control. A cohort of 226 elite Rugby Union, American Football and Ice Hockey athletes were evaluated using the inertial-sensor instrumented Y balance test. Dynamic balance performance was quantified using normalised reach distance, jerk magnitude root-Mean-Squared (Jerk Mag RMS) and gyroscope magnitude sample entropy (Gyro Mag SEn). Concussed athletes who consented to follow-up were evaluated 24 to 48-hours post-injury, and at the point of return to full contact training (RTP). Seventeen athletes sustained a concussion and consented to both the 24 to 48-hour and RTP follow-up testing. Twenty uninjured control athletes were re-tested 6-months following initial screening. Concussed athletes had reductions in normalised reach distance (Cohens D=0.66-1.16) and Jerk Mag (Cohens D=0.57-1.14) 24 to 48-hours post-injury, which returned to pre-injury levels by the point of RTP. There was no significant difference in performance between the baseline and 6-month follow-up in the 20 un-injured athletes (Cohens D=0.06-0.51). There was a statistically significant linear association between Jerk Mag RMS 24 to 48-hours post-injury and the natural log of RTP duration (R2= 0.27 to 0.33). These results indicate that concussed athletes possessed alterations in dynamic movement control 24 to 48-hours post-concussion, which typically returns to pre-injury levels by the point of RTP. Furthermore, evaluation of dynamic movement control 24 to 48 hours post injury may aid in the evaluation of recovery prognosis.
      601Scopus© Citations 11
  • Publication
    Challenging Concussed Athletes: The Future of Balance Assessment in Concussion
    The assessment and management of sports-related concussion has become a contentious issue in the field of sports medicine. The current consensus in concussion evaluation involves the use of a subjective examination, supported by multifactorial assessment batteries designed to target the various components of cerebral function. Balance assessment forms an important component of this multifactorial assessment, as it can provide an insight into the function of the sensorimotor subsystems post-concussion. In recent times, there has been a call to develop objective clinical assessments that can aid in the assessment and monitoring of concussion. However, traditional static balance assessments are derived from neurologically impaired populations, are subjective in nature, do not adequately challenge high functioning athletes and may not be capable of detecting subtle balance disturbances following a concussive event. In this review, we provide an overview of the importance of assessing motor function following a concussion, and the challenges facing clinicians in its assessment and monitoring. Additionally, we discuss the limitations of the current clinical methods employed in balance assessment, the role of technology in improving the objectivity of traditional assessments, and the potential role inexpensive portable technology may play in providing objective measures of more challenging dynamic tasks.
      281Scopus© Citations 22
  • Publication
    Therapeutic exergaming
    Exercise therapy is prescribed by physiotherapists and rehabilitation practitioners as part of the treatment programme for many movement impairment disorders. Poor adherence and inadequate exercise technique often result in poor outcomes for these patients and delays their return to full physical function. Therapeutic exergaming, which is the use of computer games and body-worn motion tracking sensors to teach therapeutic exercise programmes to patients, may offer solutions to these problems. In this paper we describe one such system, known as FlyFit, which offers a sensor-driven flight game environment that allows physiotherapists to intuitively design game levels that will induce patients to correctly carry out their exercises programme. A four-week pilot study to investigate the training effect of the system compared to a conventional exercise training approach is described. Results suggest these exergaming systems may induce improvements in balance and strength similar to the conventional programme along with increased levels of intrinsic motivation but further research is warranted.
      1542Scopus© Citations 10
  • Publication
    Inertial Sensor Technology Can Capture Changes in Dynamic Balance Control during the Y Balance Test
    Introduction: The Y Balance Test (YBT) is one of the most commonly utilised clinical dynamicbalance assessments. Research has demonstrated the utility of the YBT in identifying balancedeficits in individuals following lower limb injury. However, quantifying dynamic balancebased on reach distances alone fails to provide potentially important information related tothe quality of movement control and choice of movement strategy during the reaching action.The addition of an inertial sensor to capture more detailed motion data may allow for the inexpensive,accessible quantification of dynamic balance control during the YBT reach excursions.As such, the aim of this study was to compare baseline and fatigued dynamic balancecontrol, using reach distances and 95EV (95% ellipsoid volume), and evaluate the ability of95EV to capture alterations in dynamic balance control, which are not detected by YBT reachdistances. Methods: As part of this descriptive laboratory study, 15 healthy participants completedrepeated YBTs at 20, 10, and 0 min prior to and following a modified 60-s Wingate testthat was used to introduce a short-term reduction in dynamic balance capability. Dynamicbalance was assessed using the standard normalised reach distance method, while dynamicbalance control during the reach attempts was simultaneously measured by means of the95EV derived from an inertial sensor, worn at the level of the 4th lumbar vertebra. Results:Intraclass correlation coefficients for the inertial sensor-derived measures ranged from 0.76to 0.92, demonstrating strong intrasession test-retest reliability. Statistically significant altera-tions (p < 0.05) in both reach distance and the inertial sensor-derived 95EV measure wereobserved immediately post-fatigue. However, reach distance deficits returned to baseline levelswithin 10 min, while 95EV remained significantly increased (p < 0.05) beyond 20 min forall 3 reach distances. Conclusion: These findings demonstrate the ability of an inertial sensorderivedmeasure to quantify alterations in dynamic balance control, which are not capturedby traditional reach distances alone. This suggests that the addition of an inertial sensor tothe YBT may provide clinicians and researchers with an accessible means to capture subtlealterations in motor function in the clinical setting.
      302Scopus© Citations 19
  • Publication
    Investigating the effects of maximal anaerobic fatigue on dynamic postural control using the Y-Balance Test
    ObjectivesThe Y Balance Test is one of the most commonly used dynamic balance assessments, providing an insight into the integration of the sensorimotor subsystems. In recent times, there has been an increase in interest surrounding its use in various clinical populations demonstrating alterations in motor function. Therefore, it is important to examine the effect physiological influences such as fatigue play in dynamic postural control, and establish a timeframe for its recovery.DesignDescriptive laboratory study.MethodsTwenty male and female (age 23.75 4.79 years, height 174.12 8.45 cm, mass 69.32 8.76 kg) partaking in competitive sport, completed the Y Balance Test protocol at 0, 10 and 20 min, prior to a modified 60 s Wingate fatiguing protocol. Post-fatigue assessments were then completed at 0, 10 and 20 min post-fatiguing intervention.ResultsIntraclass correlation coefficients demonstrated excellent intra-session reliability (0.9760.982) across the three pre-fatigue YBT tests. Post-hoc paired sample t-tests demonstrated that all three reach directions demonstrated statistically significant differences between pre-fatigue and the first post-fatigue measurement (anterior; p = 0.019, posteromedial; p = 0.019 & posterolateral; p = 0.003). The anterior reach direction returned to pre-fatigue levels within 10 min (p = 0.632). The posteromedial reach direction returned to pre-fatigue levels within 20 min (p = 0.236), while the posterolateral direction maintained a statistically significant difference at 20 min (p = 0.023).ConclusionsMaximal anaerobic fatigue has a negative effect on normalised Y balance test scores in all three directions. Following the fatiguing protocol, dynamic postural control returns to pre-fatigue levels for the anterior (<10 min), posteromedial (<20 min) and posterolateral (>20 min).
      889Scopus© Citations 34