Technical Brief

How Different Marker Sets Affect Joint Angles in Inverse Kinematics Framework

[+] Author and Article Information
Giulia Mantovani

School of Human Kinetics,
University of Ottawa,
200 Lees Avenue,
Ottawa, ON K1N 6N5, Canada
e-mail: gmant053@uottawa.ca

Mario Lamontagne

School of Human Kinetics,
University of Ottawa,
200 Lees Avenue,
Ottawa, ON K1N 6N5, Canada;
Department of Mechanical Engineering,
University of Ottawa,
200 Lees Avenue,
Ottawa, ON K1N 6N5, Canada
e-mail: mlamon@uottawa.ca

1Corresponding author.

Manuscript received March 26, 2016; final manuscript received September 3, 2016; published online February 24, 2017. Assoc. Editor: Tammy L. Haut Donahue.

J Biomech Eng 139(4), 044503 (Feb 24, 2017) (7 pages) Paper No: BIO-16-1118; doi: 10.1115/1.4034708 History: Received March 26, 2016; Revised September 03, 2016

The choice of marker set is a source of variability in motion analysis. Studies exist which assess the performance of marker sets when direct kinematics is used, but these results cannot be extrapolated to the inverse kinematic framework. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to examine the sensitivity of kinematic outcomes to inter-marker set variability in an inverse kinematic framework. The compared marker sets were plug-in-gait, University of Ottawa motion analysis model and a three-marker-cluster marker set. Walking trials of 12 participants were processed in opensim. The coefficient of multiple correlations was very good for sagittal (>0.99) and transverse (>0.92) plane angles, but worsened for the transverse plane (0.72). Absolute reliability indices are also provided for comparison among studies: minimum detectable change values ranged from 3 deg for the hip sagittal range of motion to 16.6 deg of the hip transverse range of motion. Ranges of motion of hip and knee abduction/adduction angles and hip and ankle rotations were significantly different among the three marker configurations (P < 0.001), with plug-in-gait producing larger ranges of motion. Although the same model was used for all the marker sets, the resulting minimum detectable changes were high and clinically relevant, which warns for caution when comparing studies that use different marker configurations, especially if they differ in the joint-defining markers.

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Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 1

Representation of the three different marker sets compared in the study. The markers labeled with regular font belong to the original plug-in-gait marker set, the ones in bold are an adjustment made for the UOMAM marker set, and the underlined ones are the extramarkers used for cluster. To be noticed, cluster uses RTHI, LTHI, RTIB, and LTIB as part of the cluster for right and left thigh and right and left tibia segments, respectively. Also, the two extra markers at the pelvis are placed in the midpoint between the anterior and posterior iliac crests and have been added to the plug-in-gait marker set to help tracking the other pelvic markers during occlusions, which occur often during movements, such as squatting.

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 2

Box plots of the range of motion (ROM) distributions over the eight kinematics variables for every marker set. Repeated measures ANOVA showed that the three marker sets were significantly different (P < 0.001) for hip and knee ab/adduction angles and hip and ankle rotations. The symbol ‘X’ indicates outliers.



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