A kinematic analysis of the angle of the trunk in the sagittal plane, under manipulated striking patterns and footwear conditions.
Cardiff Metropolitan University
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Aim: This study aims to further understand the flexion/extension of the trunk in the sagittal plane throughout the stance phase of a running stride for different striking pattern and footwear conditions in relation to injury. Background: An increase in participation in the sport of running is resulting in an increase in a variety of injuries, most commonly overuse injuries. It’s important to understand the mechanics of the body as a whole in order to minimise injury risk. There is a considerable understanding of the kinematics of the trunk flexion/extension in running gait; however the stance phase is rarely divided and discussed specifically. It is hypothesised that a forefoot striking pattern will cause a more flexed trunk angle than rear foot at every stage of the stance phase. Method: Nine male endurance athletes of age 21 years old (± 1.5), height 179.1 cm (± 6.19) and body mass 68.42kg (± 8.17) performed repeated 60m trials where joint angles were measured using CODA motion software. They performed 4 barefoot and 4 shod trials, where 2 of each were run with a forefoot strike and 2 with a rearfoot strike. Results: The comparison between forefoot strike and rearfoot strike presented significant differences (p < 0.05) in trunk angle under every measured point of the stance phase. Comparisons between shod and barefoot data demonstrated significant differences only during the mid-stance (p = 0.035) and at the maximum angle (p = 0.042) of the stance phase. The initial contact provided the minimum angle for all trials under all conditions, whilst the occurrence of the maximum angle was seen to be individual-dependant. Conclusion: Footwear and striking pattern conditions are seen to influence the flexion/extension trunk in the sagittal plane during the stance phase, suggesting that proximal manipulations result in distal changes. The hypothesis that a more flexed trunk angle would be seen for a forefoot strike than a rearfoot strike at every stage of the stance phase was rejected.
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