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Causes of variation in intrinsic ankle stiffness and the consequences for standing

Sakanaka, Tania Emi (2017)
Ph.D. thesis, University of Birmingham.

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Previous studies have shown that the intrinsic mechanical stiffness of the ankles is less than necessary to fully stabilize the body in the upright position (Loram and Lakie, 2002a; Morasso and Schieppati, 1999; Morasso and Sanguineti, 2002; Casadio et al., 2005). Following these studies, research about the controlling mechanisms of standing (the maintenance of an upright posture by a combination of intrinsic and active mechanisms) has developed considerably (Lakie et al., 2003; Loram et al., 2005a,b, 2011; Masani et al., 2006; Maurer and Peterka, 2005; Peterka, 2002). However, very little attention was given to the intrinsic mechanisms themselves. Here I tackled this issue by manipulating the ankle (and its surrounding tissues) in various ways. The objective was to investigate ankle stiffness dependency on mechanical properties that are particular to muscles and tendons. Within-individual differences were confirmed in various conditions. I have shown that in standing, intrinsic ankle stiffness is affected by movement amplitude and history of movement, as well as active ankle torque and passive tendon stretch. I have found no dependency of ankle stiffness on localized cooling. With regards to the effect that differences in intrinsic ankle stiffness may cause to standing sway, a between-individual analysis showed an inverse correlation between ankle stiffness and sway magnitude.

Type of Work:Ph.D. thesis.
Supervisor(s):Reynolds, Raymond and Lakie, Martin
School/Faculty:Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Life & Environmental Sciences
Department:School of Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation Sciences
Subjects:RC1200 Sports Medicine
Institution:University of Birmingham
ID Code:7447
This unpublished thesis/dissertation is copyright of the author and/or third parties. The intellectual property rights of the author or third parties in respect of this work are as defined by The Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 or as modified by any successor legislation. Any use made of information contained in this thesis/dissertation must be in accordance with that legislation and must be properly acknowledged. Further distribution or reproduction in any format is prohibited without the permission of the copyright holder.
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