* I have always enjoyed all kinds of sports. After graduating with a Sports diploma in 2006 I took a job as a fitness instructor in a gym. In the gym I would watch people run on the treadmill and think to myself, how can this persons running style not be causing them serious injury. Virtually every person I saw on the treadmill seemed to have some sort of problem associated with there lower limbs. I started thinking what could I do to help correct their issues and so my interest in biomechanics began.
* So what is biomechanics? Gait Analysis and Biomechanics (n.d.) describe the gait cycle as how the body moves from one point to another. In addition Perry (1992) breaks the gait cycle down into two distinct divisions, stance and swing.
* The image clearly shows the % of time that each limb is in contact with the ground and the position of the limb at each stage.
* Subotnick (1999) goes a step further and adds an extra phase to the gait cycle for runner’s called the float phase. This phase occurs twice and involves both limbs being lifted off the ground simultaneously. This means that the lower limb must go through the gait cycle quicker and if there is a defect, (which is enhanced during running) the body will compensate in other areas (Pecina and Bojanic, 2004).
* My interest in biomechanics stems over a 4 year period with a particular interest in runners biomechanics as I am a keen sportsman and runner. After choosing a topic I decided to look an area that will affect just about every runner. Injury. Trotter and Pierrynowski (2008) indicate that in an average year between 37% and 56% of runners may develop some form of injury of the lower leg.
* I had an understanding of gait and needed to find out what can I do to help a person recover form injury. One of the answers was orthotics and seeing as I am studying Podiatry the connection was easily made. Orthoses can be divided into two groups, custom made or prefabricated (Menz, 2009). SHOW VISUAL
* The purpose of orthoses is to position the posture of the foot into a standardized neutral position (Trotter & Pierrynowski, 2008). The neutral position is important during gait as all the body’s components must remain in equilibrium/balance in order to efficiently propel the body forward (Landorf & Keenan, 2000). Foot orthoses are an important tool to, prevent injuries and deformities from getting worse, help alleviate pain and enhance performance (Landorf & Keenan, 2000).
* So by combing my three areas of interest I came up with this question.
* I choose this design as quantitative research is objective and involves any form of information that deals with numbers and is measurable in a wide sample or quantity of data. Quantitative methods can include tools such as tables, theories, hypothesis, graphs, stats, data samples and surveys.
* Acording to Cottrell and McKenzie (2011), survey research is a type of non-experimental research that is descriptive as well as being an ideal way to gather information about a particular group of people. Therefore in this case I felt that the best way to gather information on runners and injuries was to follow this design. The design would incorporate a survey type of research and would utilise a questionnaire, muscle strain grading system and pain scale which we will see in a few slides.
* The research will follow a bivariate approach as the researchers are seeking to find if there is an association, relationship or difference between variables. Bivariate analysis helps to compare and control two or more related variables in situations and seeks to find out the strength of the association. The independent variable is said to cause an apparent change in, or simply affect, the dependent variable. According to Babbie (2008), participant’s behaviour can be viewed as a dependent variable (which in this case is pain/injury), and relies on and is partially determined by the independent variable (orthoses). Bivariate analysis statistics are explanatory rather than merely descriptive.
* This leads to the results which will be constructed in a percentage down table, as this is easy to follow and understand (Babbie, 2008).
* An example of a percentage down table is on the right.
* There would be eight tables, one for each time the Borg CR10 was administered and one final total table. All tables would have age and the three types of orthoses along the top. The left hand side of the table would have the pain scale ratings (0-10), and the percentages next to the pain numbers would represent how many participants circled that number in relation to the treatment received. The sixth table would collate all the collective data from the first five tables and show an overall decrease or increase in the pain perception scale from the initial consult to the final consult.
The effect orthoses have on
altering gait and recovery from
lower limb sports injuries.
Mark Rule (0947944)
Research Design - Sampling
• Sampling followed both the probability and nonprobability
format. The nonprobability format involves including
participants who have a specific trait, which in this case is
runners with lower limb injuries. The probability format
utilises simple random sampling as participants will need to
be randomly split into three groups.
Research Design - Surveys
• GRADE 1 STRAIN
Damage to individual muscle
fibres (less than 5% of fibres).
This is a mild strain which
requires 2 to 3 weeks rest.
• GRADE 2 STRAIN
Extensive damage, with more
muscle fibres involved, but the
muscle is not completely
ruptured. The rest period
required is usually between 3
and 6 weeks.
• GRADE 3 STRAIN
Complete rupture of a muscle. In
a sports person this will usually
require surgery to repair the
muscle. The rehabilitation time
is around 3 months.
• It is expected that the findings of the study may have a
bearing on which orthoses practitioners prescribe for runner’s
injuries. This is because one type of orthoses may provide a
quicker return to activity by reducing pain or injury quicker
than the others due to the correct biomechanical alignment
of the lower limb.
• Babbie, E. (2008). The Basics of Social Research (4th ed.). Belmont, California: Thomson
• Cottrell, R., & McKenzie, J. (2011). Health Promotion & Education Research Methods.Sudbury,
Massachusetts: Jones and Bartlett Publishers.
• Gait Analysis and Biomechanics. (n.d.). Retrieved from
• Landorf, K., & Keenan, A. (2000). Efficacy of Foot Orthoses: What Does the Literature Tell Us?,
Journal of the American Podiatric Medical Association, 90(3), 149-155.
• Menz, H. (2009). Foot orthoses: how much customisation is necessary?, Journal of Foot and
Ankle Research 2(23), 1-3. doi: 10.1186/1757-1146-2-23
• Pecina, M., & Bojanic, I. (2004). Overuse injuries of the Musculoskeletal System. Florida: CRC
• Perry, J. (1992). Gait Analysis: Normal and Pathological Function. New Jersey: Slack.
• Subotnick, S. (1999). Sports Medicine of the Lower Extremity (2nd ed.). Philadelphia,
Pennsylvania: Churchill Livingstone.
• Trotter, L., & Pierrynowski, M. (2008). The Short-term Effectiveness of Full-Contact Custom
made Foot Orthoses and Prefabricated Shoe Inserts on Lower-Extremity
Musculoskeletal Pain. Journal of the American Podiatric Medical Association, 98(5),
357-363. Retrieved from Scopus.
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