Biomechanical assessment of a professional road cyclist following recovery from severe injury: A case report
Keywords:3-D kinematics, EMG, isokinetic dynamometer, injury, recovery
AbstractThe incidence of injury in top level road cyclists is relatively high. In a recent longitudinal study over four years using a cohort of elite road cyclists it was documented that only 15.6 % remained injury free. Acute fracture injuries accounted for 48.5 % of the total number of injuries with 26.5 % of these acute injuries being sustained in the lower extremities. This case report refers to an elite level, professional, road cyclist who returned to competition following severe fractures to the left femur and right ankle, sustained during a serious road traffic accident. The athlete reported power imbalances and feeling of dysfunction upon their return to competition. Bilateral 3-D kinematics and EMG analyses of the lower extremities were obtained. Clear asymmetries were observed in a number of 3-D kinematic parameters. These suggest an overreliance on coronal and transverse plane motions to compensate for reductions in sagittal plane movement as a result of the injury. Such outcomes have both clinical and performance implications which are discussed fully. This innovative use of advanced 3-D kinematic analysis in conjunction with isokinetic and electromyographic techniques shows the value of sports science support in improving long term performance outcomes, following a significant period of rehabilitation.
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