Background In order to make reliable clinical decisions in relation to when injured or surgically operated athletes may return to daily functional and weight-bearing sporting activities, there is a need to establish referent average weight-bearing values in common sporting activities.
Objectives To evaluate average percentage body weight (APBW) values and weight-bearing distribution percentages (WBDP) between sports activities in a referent adult population, and to suggest clinical implications.
Design Original research study.
Setting Lerner Sports Center, Hebrew University, Mount Scopus, Jerusalem, Israel.
Participants 75 asymptomatic volunteers, mean age=33.5(19–72) years SD=15.1, mean weight (kg)=70.7 (43–113) SD=14.1.
Interventions 4 tests were conducted: 1. Overground walking (OGW) over a 20m distance, 2. Overground jogging (OGJ) over a 20m distance, 3.Treadmill jogging (TJ) at a constant speed of 8.5 km/hr for a 15-second interval and 4. Elliptical exercise (EE) for a 20 second period at a resistance and incline level of 10, and a steady pace within the range of 70–95 steps/min.
Main outcome measure The Smartstep™ weight-bearing gait analysis system.
Results The APBW value on the entire foot in OGW was 112% (SD=15.57), in OGJ, 201% (SD=31.24, in TJ, 175% (SD=25.48) and in EE, 73% (SD=13.8). Regarding WBDP, the swing phase in OGJ and TJ was significantly longer than the stance phase (P<.05).
Conclusions EE significantly reduces weight-bearing as compared to other common functional and sporting activities. This information is also useful from a repetitive loading standpoint (to prevent overuse injury) or for exercise recommendations for those at greater risk for exacerbating chronic joint pathology.
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