The Differential Effect of Arm Movements during Gait on the Forward Acceleration of the Centre of Mass in Children with Cerebral Palsy and Typically Developing Children
SourceFrontiers in Human Neuroscience, 11, (2017), article 96
Article / Letter to editor
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Frontiers in Human Neuroscience
SubjectRadboudumc 3: Disorders of movement DCMN: Donders Center for Medical Neuroscience
Background: We aimed to study the contribution of upper limb movements to propulsion during walking in typically developing (TD) children (n = 5) and children with hemiplegic and diplegic cerebral palsy (CP; n = 5 and n = 4, respectively). Methods: Using integrated three-dimensional motion capture data and a scaled generic musculoskeletal model that included upper limbs, we generated torque driven simulations of gait in OpenSim. Induced acceleration analyses were then used to determine the contributions of the individual actuators located at the relevant degrees of freedoms of the upper and lower limb joints to the forward acceleration of the COM at each time point of the gait simulation. The mean values of the contribution of the actuators of upper limbs, lower limbs, and gravity in different phases of the gait cycle were compared between the three groups. Findings: The results indicated a limited contribution of the upper limb actuators to COM forward acceleration compared to the contribution of lower limbs and gravity, in the three groups. In diplegic CP, the contribution of the upper limbs seemed larger compared to TD during the preswing and swing phases of gait. In hemiplegic CP, the unaffected arm seemed to contribute more to COM deceleration during (pre)swing, while the affected side contributed to COM acceleration. Interpretation: These findings suggest that in the presence of lower limb dysfunction, the contribution of the upper limbs to forward propulsion is altered, although they remain negligible compared to the lower limbs and gravity.
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