USING A GONIOMETER FOR MOVEMENT ANALYSIS IN WATER-AN ALTERNATIVE TOOL

  • L.A. Griffin
  • W.J. Zimmermann

Abstract

In the past, therapists have been interested in developing and fabricating their own adaptive equipment and tests for use in the evaluation and treatment of their patients. These developments have been motivated by limitations of facilities and available equipment, as well as by the need to improve validity and reliability of methods used in clinical settings. To study movement on land, both video mid the goniometer are used, and it has been shown that the goniometer is a good tool for clinical use. In the water medium, methodology is still being developed, validated, and standardized. Currently, the most common methods of analyzing human movement in water are by using different video methods such M video taping using an underwater dome port unit or through a pool side window. However, these methods require special facilities and/or equipment, which may limit their u s in clinical settings. . I . , ' In this study, data from video analyses were compared data collected by using a goniometer developed for water use. The purpose of this study was to examine if the goniometer may be a valid and reliable alternative to video analysis when evaluating in-water movement In clinical settings. The setup of video collection was done to stimulate the clinical setting and Its limitations. The temperature of the water was 82 degrees and clarity was poor. An underwater casing with a dome port, housing a Sony HI-8 camera, was placed perpendicular to a mechanical knee joint at a distance of six feet. Two-dimensional video analyses of the knee joint were done both statically, in four positions, and dynamically. Simultaneously, data was collected via a goniometer attached to the mechanical knee. Results suggest that acclimatization of equipment is necessary for reliable results. Calibrations need to be done in the water environment because of the effect of temperature on the variable resistor. Results indicate that the goniometer modified for water use appears to be a feasible and effective alternative to video analyses when used in the evaluation and treatment of patients.