Journal of Occupational Rehabilitation

, Volume 6, Issue 4, pp 203–214 | Cite as

Dynamic low back functional motion capacity evaluation

  • S. A. Ferguson
  • W. S. Marras
  • R. R. Crowell


Most current functional capacity evaluations focus on range of motion and strength as measures of Wellness. The goal of this study was to evaluate the dynamic functional motion capacity of controls (those without low back pain) and low back pain patients in the three cardinal planes of the body. The hypothesis was that injury would not only affect sagittal motion but also lateral and twisting motion that would load the spine in a different manner. Twenty-six age and gender matched controls and low back pain patients were tested. Trunk motion parameters of range of motion (ROM), velocity, and acceleration were measured in all three planes of the body as subjects performed three separate tasks eliciting motion in each of the three cardinal planes of the body. Controls exhibited significantly higher performance than low back pain patients in all three planes of the body for velocity and acceleration but not ROM. Single parameter discriminant function models indicated that the velocity and acceleration motion parameters distinguished between LBP patients and the control group more effectively than ROM in the cardinal planes. Multiple parameter discriminant function demonstrated that coupled motion models further increased the ability to distinguish between the control and patient groups. These results provide insight into new methods of evaluating functional capacity using velocity, acceleration, and coupling which may provide valuable information in determining the recovery of a patient.

Key words

dynamic functional motion capacity low back pain trunk measurement 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. A. Ferguson
    • 2
  • W. S. Marras
    • 2
  • R. R. Crowell
    • 1
  1. 1.The Ohio Spine CenterColumbus
  2. 2.Biodynamics LaboratoryThe Ohio State UniversityColumbus

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