Testing & Evaluation

Functional assessment of the locomotor system in rehabilitation

What caused my injury or pain, and what steps can I take to prevent it in the future? The foundation of successful rehabilitation after an injury or bout of pain is a correct diagnosis. The functional assessment of the locomotor system that we conduct at Motus Melior pinpoints the real causes and mechanisms responsible for your injury or pain.

Funkcionalna dijagnostika lokomotornog sustava u rehabilitaciji

A typical example might be non-contact injuries and knee overuse syndromes, which are typically due to functional insufficiencies affecting the ankle and hip joints. Depending on the nature of a particular injury or type of pain, our team of experts will conduct a functional evaluation of the appropriate locomotor system regions in order to detect posture, movement, and neuromuscular function insufficiencies. These data concerning the status of the locomotor system, in conjunction with an opinion of a qualified orthopedic surgeon and/or physical therapist, serve as a basis for an individualized program designed to promote the functional rehabilitation of musculoskeletal injuries and pain and to prevent them from recurring.

The evaluation of an injury or an overuse syndrome is based upon a clinical examination conducted by a specialist, along with imaging of the relevant anatomical structures – muscles, connective tissue, and bones (the so called “structural” evaluation approach).

The “functional” evaluation approach, in contrast, is geared toward neuromuscular and motor function assessment at rest, during execution of movements under “unloaded” and “loaded” conditions, and during locomotion. The data obtained using this approach are added to the data obtained using the “structural” approach, thus helping us to pinpoint the real causes and mechanisms responsible for your injury or overuse syndrome. We also use this approach in order to determine the risks of sport-specific injuries and of overuse syndrome and to successfully prevent them from recurring. In particular, findings regarding the occurrence of, cause of, and risk factors for the kinds of musculoskeletal injuries that typically occur within the context of sports and recreational activities help us to (i) identify individuals who are at an increased risk of injury and (ii) lessen this risk by selecting the appropriate training and ergonomic interventions. By applying this scientifically-based approach, we can reduce the frequency and severity of injuries by more than 50%!

Motus Melior uses the most up-to-date biomechanical, kinesiological, and electrophysiological assessment methods along with physical therapy and manual medicine evaluation techniques. Relying on this information, we can pinpoint functional insufficiencies and typical structural limitations in posture and during movement and locomotion. Functional insufficiencies (dysfunctions) are leading risk factors for musculoskeletal injuries and conditions. Often these insufficiencies turn out to be the root causes of injuries and pain.

At Motus Melior, functional assessment in rehabilitation includes the following:

  • Manual examination of the locomotor system and body posture
  • Goniometry – assessment of passive and active joint mobility
  • Functional stability and joint and spine proprioception assessment
  • Assessment of basic movement patterns
  • Isokinetic dynamometry – assessment of isolated muscle strength and endurance
  • Assessment of contractility and voluntary muscle activation
  • Posturography – static and dynamic body balance assessment
  • Biomechanical analysis of functional motor tasks and locomotion:
    • Biomechanical analysis of jumps and landings
    • Biomechanical analysis of walking, running and sprinting