Development of a Portable Anchored Dynamometer for Collection of Maximal Voluntary Isometric Contractions in Biomechanics Research on Dancers
Surface electromyography (sEMG) has been used in dance medicine research since the 1970s, but normalization procedures are not consistently employed in the field. The purpose of this project was to develop a portable anchored dynamometer (PAD) specifically for dance-related research. Due to the limited studies in the dance research literature using normalization procedures for sEMG data, a review of the procedures used in the exercise science literature was conducted. A portable anchored dynamometer was then developed and tested with dancers, using methods validated in previous literature. We collected sEMG maximum voluntary isometric contractions (MVIC, mV) from 10 female dancers (mean age 31.0 +/- 15 yrs, mean height 1.63 +/- 7.6 cm, mean weight 57.6 +/- 6.9 kg, and 17.0 +/- 13.9 yrs of training in ballet and/or modern dance) over three trials (5 sec each) for eight muscles bilaterally (quadriceps, tibialis anterior, abductor hallucis, gastrocnemius, hamstrings, gluteus maximus, erector spinae, and rectus abdominus). Consistency of data and feedback from dancers suggest that this dance-specific portable anchored dynamometer is effective for future sEMG studies in dance research. Medical Problems of Performing Artists 2011; 26(4)185-194.