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Pulvinar thalamic nucleus allows for asynchronous spike propagation through the cortex. - Frontiers in computational neuroscience
We create two multilayered feedforward networks composed of excitatory and inhibitory integrate-and-fire neurons in the balanced state to investigate the role of cortico-pulvino-cortical connections. The first network consists of ten feedforward levels where a Poisson spike train with varying firing rate is applied as an input in layer one. Although the balanced state partially avoids spike synchronization during the transmission, the average firing-rate in the last layer either decays or saturates depending on the feedforward pathway gain. The last layer activity is almost independent of the input even for a carefully chosen intermediate gain. Adding connections to the feedforward pathway by a nine areas Pulvinar structure improves the firing-rate propagation to become almost linear among layers. Incoming strong pulvinar spikes balance the low feedforward gain to have a unit input-output relation in the last layer. Pulvinar neurons evoke a bimodal activity depending on the magnitude input: synchronized spike bursts between 20 and 80 Hz and an asynchronous activity for very both low and high frequency inputs. In the first regime, spikes of last feedforward layer neurons are asynchronous with weak, low frequency, oscillations in the rate. Here, the uncorrelated incoming feedforward pathway washes out the synchronized thalamic bursts. In the second regime, spikes in the whole network are asynchronous. As the number of cortical layers increases, long-range pulvinar connections can link directly two or more cortical stages avoiding their either saturation or gradual activity falling. The Pulvinar acts as a shortcut that supplies the input-output firing-rate relationship of two separated cortical areas without changing the strength of connections in the feedforward pathway.
State-specific differences in school sports preparticipation physical evaluation policies. - Pediatrics
This study evaluated the current preparticipation physical evaluation (PPE) administrative policies and cardiovascular screening content of all 50 states and Washington, DC.PPE policies, documents, and forms from all 50 states and Washington, DC, were compared with the preparticipation physical evaluation-fourth edition (PPE-4) consensus recommendations. All electronic documents were publicly available and obtained from state interscholastic athletic associations.Fifty (98%) states required a PPE before participation. Most states (53%, n = 27) required a specific PPE form, whereas 24% (n = 12) of states recommended a specific form. Twenty-three states (45%) required or recommended use of the PPE-4 form or a modified version of it, and 27 states (53%) required or recommended use of outdated or unidentifiable forms. Ten states (20%) had not revised their PPE forms in >5 years. States permitted 9 different health care providers to administer PPEs. Only 22 states (43%) addressed all 12 of the PPE-4 personal and family history cardiovascular screening items, and 2 states (4%) addressed between 8 and 11 items. For the remaining 26 states, most (29%) addressed â‰¤3 screening items.Our results show that inconsistencies in PPE policies exist nationwide. Most states have been slow to adopt PPE-4 recommendations and do not adequately address the personal and family cardiovascular history questions. Findings suggest a need for PPE standardization nationwide and adoption of an electronic PPE process. This approach would enable creation of a national database and benefit the public by facilitating a more evidenced PPE.Copyright Â© 2015 by the American Academy of Pediatrics.
Postural stability does not differ among female sports with high risk of anterior cruciate ligament injury. - Medical problems of performing artists
Dancers have a lower incidence of anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury compared to athletes in sports that involve cutting and landing motions. Balance can impact ACL injury risk and is related to neuromuscular control during movement. The purpose of this study was to investigate whether balance differences exist among female dancers and female soccer and basketball athletes. Fifty-eight female dancers, soccer, and basketball athletes (16.5 Â± 1.6 yrs, 1.6 Â± 0.2 m, 60.2 Â± 14.1 kg) completed the Stability Evaluation Test (SET) on the NeuroCom VSR Sport (NeuroCom International, Clackamas, OR) to measure sway velocity. Video records of the SET test were used for Balance Error Scoring System (BESS) test scoring. A oneway ANCOVA compared composite sway velocity and BESS scores among sports. There was no statistically significant difference for sway velocity or BESS among sports (sway velocity soccer 2.3 Â± 0.4, dance 2.2 Â± 0.4, and basketball 2.4 Â± 0.4; BESS soccer 13.6 Â± 5.0, dance 11.9 Â± 5.5, and basketball 14.9 Â± 5.1, p>0.05). Balance was similar among athletes participating in different sports (dance, basketball, and soccer). Quasi-static balance may not play a significant role in neuromuscular control during movement and not be a significant risk factor to explain the disparity in ACL injury incidence among sports. Future research should examine the effects of dynamic balance and limb asymmetries among sports to elucidate on the existing differences on ACL injury incidence rates.
Lumbar lordosis in female collegiate dancers and gymnasts. - Medical problems of performing artists
Postural deviations can predispose an individual to increased injury risk. Specifically, lumbar deviations are related to increased low back pain and injury. Dancers and gymnasts are anecdotally suggested to have exaggerated lumbar lordosis and subsequently may be at increased risk of lumbar pathologies. Our objective was to examine lumbar lordosis levels in dancers and gymnasts.We examined lumbar lordosis in 47 healthy collegiate females (17 dancers, 29 gymnasts; mean age 20.2 Â± 1.6 yrs) using 2-dimensional sagittal plane photographs and the Watson MacDonncha Posture Analysis instrument. Participants' lordosis levels were cross-tabulated and a Mann-Whitney U-test compared lumbar lordosis between groups (p<0.05).Most participants (89.4%, n=42) exhibited either marked (dancers 50%, n=9; gymnasts 62.1%, n=18; combined 57.4%, n=27) or moderate (dancers 27.8%, n=5; gymnasts 34.5%, n=10; combined 31.9%, n=15) lumbar lordosis deviations. The distribution of lordosis was similar across groups (p=0.22).Most dancers and gymnasts had moderate or marked lumbar lordosis. The extreme ranges of motion required during dancing and gymnastics may contribute to the participants' high lumbar lordosis. Instructors should be aware that there may be links between repetitive hyperextension activities and lumbar lordosis levels in dancers and gymnasts. Thus, they should proactively examine lumbar lordosis in their dancers and gymnasts. How much age of training onset, regimens, survivor bias, or other factors influence lumbar lordosis requires study. Longitudinal studies are also needed to determine if lumbar lordosis levels influence lumbar injury incidence in dancers and gymnasts.
Relationships between core endurance, hip strength, and balance in collegiate female athletes. - International journal of sports physical therapy
Lower extremity injuries such as Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) tears remain a concern in collegiate female athletes. Core endurance and hip strength reportedly influence ACL and lower extremity injury risk. Good neuromuscular control, as measured by the Star Excursion Balance Test (SEBT) test is associated with decreased lower extremity injuries. The exact relationships between core endurance, hip strength, and balance (SEBT scores), and how they impact one another in the female collegiate athlete remain unclear. Thus, the purpose of this study was to investigate relationships between core endurance, hip strength, and balance in collegiate female athletes.Forty collegiate female athletes (19.6Â±1.1yrs, 163.1Â±7.8cm, 61.3Â±6.5kgs) performed the SEBT in anterior, posterolateral, and posteromedial directions bilaterally (% leg length), McGill's anterior, posterior, and left and right plank core endurance tests (seconds), and hip abductor, flexor, extensor, and external rotator isometric strength tests bilaterally (N) using handheld dynamometry. Pearson's product moment correlations examined relationships between core endurance, hip strength, and balance. A linear regression analysis examined whether core endurance and hip strength influenced balance (pâ‰¤0.05).Anterior SEBT scores were fairly positively correlated with hip flexor and extensor strength. Posterolateral SEBT scores were fairly positively correlated with hip abductor, extensor, and flexor strength (p=0.02-to-0.004; r=0.26-to-0.45). Fair positive correlations existed between posterior core endurance and hip extensor strength bilaterally (right: p=0.02, r=0.37; left: p=0.003, r=0.47). Core endurance and SEBT scores were not correlated (p>0.05). Core endurance and hip strength did not influence SEBT scores (p=0.47).Overall, hip strength, but not core endurance was related to SEBT scores in collegiate female athletes. Females with greater hip flexor, extensor, and abductor strength also had better anterior and posterolateral SEBT scores. Having females participate in hip muscle strengthening programs may help improve their SEBT balance scores, as a measure of their neuromuscular control and influence their ACL and lower extremity injury risk.2b.
Dynamic ultrasound imaging applications to quantify musculoskeletal function. - Exercise and sport sciences reviews
Advances in imaging methods have led to new capability to study muscle and tendon motion in vivo. Direct measurements of muscle and tendon kinematics using imaging may lead to improved understanding of musculoskeletal function. This review presents quantitative ultrasound methods for muscle dynamics that can be used to assess in vivo musculoskeletal function when integrated with other conventional biomechanical measurements.
Dynamic knee stability and ballistic knee movement after ACL reconstruction: an application on instep soccer kick. - Knee surgery, sports traumatology, arthroscopy : official journal of the ESSKA
The instep soccer kick is a pre-programmed ballistic movement with a typical agonist-antagonist coordination pattern. The coordination pattern of the kick can provide insight into deficient neuromuscular control. The purpose of this study was to investigate knee kinematics and hamstrings/quadriceps coordination pattern during the knee ballistic extension phase of the instep kick in soccer players after anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction (ACL reconstruction).Seventeen players from the Portuguese Soccer League participated in this study. Eight ACL-reconstructed athletes (experimental group) and 9 healthy individuals (control group) performed three instep kicks. Knee kinematics (flexion and extension angles at football contact and maximum velocity instants) were calculated during the kicks. Rectus femoris (RF), vastus lateralis, vastus medialis, biceps femoralis, and semitendinosus muscle activations were quantified during the knee extension phase.The ACL-reconstructed group had significantly lower knee extension angle (-1.2Â Â±Â 1.6, pÂ <Â 0.021) and increased variability (1.1Â Â±Â 1.2, pÂ <Â 0.012) when compared with the control group. Within the EMG variables, the RF had a significantly greater activity in the ACL-reconstructed group than in the control group (79.9Â Â±Â 27.7Â % MVC vs. 49.2Â Â±Â 20.8Â % MVC, respectively, pÂ <Â 0.034). No other statistically significant differences were found.The findings of this study demonstrate that changes in ACL-reconstructed individuals were observed on knee extension angle and RF muscle activation while performing an instep kick. These findings are in accordance with the knee stability recovery process after ACL reconstruction. No differences were observed in the ballistic control movement pattern between normal and ACL-reconstructed subjects. Performing open kinetic chain exercises using ballistic movements can be beneficial when recovering from ACL reconstruction. The exercises should focus on achieving multi-joint coordination and full knee extension (range of motion).III.
A novel application of musculoskeletal ultrasound imaging. - Journal of visualized experiments : JoVE
Ultrasound is an attractive modality for imaging muscle and tendon motion during dynamic tasks and can provide a complementary methodological approach for biomechanical studies in a clinical or laboratory setting. Towards this goal, methods for quantification of muscle kinematics from ultrasound imagery are being developed based on image processing. The temporal resolution of these methods is typically not sufficient for highly dynamic tasks, such as drop-landing. We propose a new approach that utilizes a Doppler method for quantifying muscle kinematics. We have developed a novel vector tissue Doppler imaging (vTDI) technique that can be used to measure musculoskeletal contraction velocity, strain and strain rate with sub-millisecond temporal resolution during dynamic activities using ultrasound. The goal of this preliminary study was to investigate the repeatability and potential applicability of the vTDI technique in measuring musculoskeletal velocities during a drop-landing task, in healthy subjects. The vTDI measurements can be performed concurrently with other biomechanical techniques, such as 3D motion capture for joint kinematics and kinetics, electromyography for timing of muscle activation and force plates for ground reaction force. Integration of these complementary techniques could lead to a better understanding of dynamic muscle function and dysfunction underlying the pathogenesis and pathophysiology of musculoskeletal disorders.
Knee kinematics is altered post-fatigue while performing a crossover task. - Knee surgery, sports traumatology, arthroscopy : official journal of the ESSKA
To examine the effect of a sequential fatigue protocol on lower extremity biomechanics during a crossover cutting task in female soccer players.Eighteen female collegiate soccer players alternated between a fatigue protocol and two consecutive unanticipated crossover trials until fatigue was reached. Lower extremity biomechanics were evaluated during the crossover using a 3D motion capture system and two force plates. Repeated-measures ANOVAs analysed differences between three sequential stages of fatigue (pre, 50, 100%) for each dependent variable (Î± = 0.05).Knee flexion angles at initial contact (IC) for pre (-32 Â± 9Â°) and 50% (-29 Â± 11Â°) were significantly higher than at 100% fatigue (-22 Â± 9Â°) (p < 0.001 and p = 0.015, respectively). Knee adduction angles at IC for pre (9 Â± 5Â°) and 50% (8 Â± 4Â°) were significantly higher (p = 0.006 and p = 0.049, respectively) than at 100% fatigue (6 Â± 4Â°).Fatigue altered sagittal and frontal knee kinematics after 50% fatigue whereupon participants had diminished knee control at initial contact. Interventions should attempt to reduce the negative effects of fatigue on lower extremity biomechanics by promoting appropriate frontal plane alignment and increased knee flexion during fatigue status.III.
Changes in lower extremity biomechanics due to a short-term fatigue protocol. - Journal of athletic training
Noncontact anterior cruciate ligament injury has been reported to occur during the later stages of a game when fatigue is most likely present. Few researchers have focused on progressive changes in lower extremity biomechanics that occur throughout fatiguing.To evaluate the effects of a sequential fatigue protocol on lower extremity biomechanics during a sidestep-cutting task (SS).Controlled laboratory study.Laboratory.Eighteen uninjured female collegiate soccer players (age = 19.2 Â± 0.9 years, height = 1.66 Â± 0.5 m, mass = 61.6 Â± 5.1 kg) volunteered.The independent variable was fatigue level, with 3 levels (prefatigue, 50% fatigue, and 100% fatigue). Using 3-dimensional motion capture, we assessed lower extremity biomechanics during the SS. Participants alternated between a fatigue protocol that solicited different muscle groups and mimicked actual sport situations and unanticipated SS trials. The process was repeated until fatigue was attained.Dependent variables were hip- and knee-flexion and abduction angles and internal moments measured at initial contact and peak stance and defined as measures obtained between 0% and 50% of stance phase.Knee-flexion angle decreased from prefatigue (-17Â° Â± 5Â°) to 50% fatigue (-16Â° Â± 6Â°) and to 100% fatigue (-14Â° Â± 4Â°) (F2,34 = 5.112, P = .004). Knee flexion at peak stance increased from prefatigue (-52.9Â° Â± 5.6Â°) to 50% fatigue (-56.1Â° Â± 7.2Â°) but decreased from 50% to 100% fatigue (-50.5Â° Â± 7.1Â°) (F2,34 = 8.282, P = 001). Knee-adduction moment at peak stance increased from prefatigue (0.49 Â± 0.23 Nm/kgm) to 50% fatigue (0.55 Â± 0.25 Nm/kgm) but decreased from 50% to 100% fatigue (0.37 Â± 0.24) (F2,34 = 3.755, P = 03). Hip-flexion angle increased from prefatigue (45.4Â° Â± 10.9Â°) to 50% fatigue (46.2Â° Â± 11.2Â°) but decreased from 50% to 100% fatigue (40.9Â° Â± 11.3Â°) (F2,34 = 6.542, P = .004). Hip flexion at peak stance increased from prefatigue (49.8Â° Â± 9.9Â°) to 50% fatigue (52.9Â° Â± 12.1Â°) but decreased from 50% to 100% fatigue (46.3Â° Â± 12.9Â°) (F2,34 = 8.639, P = 001). Hip-abduction angle at initial contact decreased from prefatigue (-13.8Â° Â± 6.6Â°) to 50% fatigue (-9.1Â° Â± 6.5Â°) and to 100% fatigue (-7.8Â° Â± 6.5Â°) (F2,34 = 11.228, P < .001). Hip-adduction moment decreased from prefatigue (0.14 Â± 0.13 Nm/kgm) to 50% fatigue (0.08 Â± 0.13 Nm/kgm) and to 100% fatigue (0.06 Â± 0.05 Nm/kg) (F2,34 = 5.767, P = .007).The detrimental effects of fatigue on sagittal and frontal mechanics of the hip and knee were visible at 50% of the participants' maximal fatigue and became more marked at 100% fatigue. Anterior cruciate ligament injury-prevention programs should emphasize feedback on proper mechanics throughout an entire practice and not only at the beginning of practice.
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