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Altered knee joint neuromuscular control during landing from a jump in 10-15 year old children with Generalised Joint Hypermobility. A substudy of the CHAMPS-study Denmark

Tina Junge, Niels Wedderkopp, Jonas Bloch Thorlund, Karen Søgaard, Birgit Juul-Kristensen
Journal of Electromyography and Kinesiology 2015, 25 (3): 501-7
25801907
Generalised Joint Hypermobility (GJH) is considered an intrinsic risk factor for knee injuries. Knee neuromuscular control during landing may be altered in GJH due to reduced passive stability. The aim was to identify differences in knee neuromuscular control during landing of the Single-Leg-Hop-for-Distance test (SLHD) in 25 children with GJH compared to 29 children without GJH (controls), all 10-15years. Inclusion criteria for GJH: Beighton score⩾5/9 and minimum one hypermobile knee. EMG was recorded from the quadriceps, the hamstring and the calf muscles, presented relative to Maximum Voluntary Electrical activity (MVE). There was no difference in jump length between groups. Before landing, GJH had 33% lower Semitendinosus, but 32% higher Gastrocnemius Medialis activity and 39% higher co contraction of the lateral knee muscles, than controls. After landing, GJH had 36% lower Semitendinosus activity than controls, all significant findings. Although the groups performed equally in SLHD, GJH had a Gastrocnemius Medialis dominated neuromuscular strategy before landing, plausibly caused by reduced Semitendinosus activity. Reduced Semitendinosus activity was seen in GJH after landing, but with no compensatory Gastrocnemius Medialis activity. Reduced pre and post-activation of the Semitendinosus may present a risk factor for traumatic knee injuries as ACL ruptures in GJH with knee hypermobility.

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