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Clin Biomech (Bristol, Avon). 2003 May;18(4):350-7.

Gender differences in lower extremity mechanics during running.

Author information

  • 1Department of Physical Therapy, University of Delaware, 301 McKinly Laboratory, Newark, DE 19716-2591, USA. reedferb@udel.edu

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To compare differences in hip and knee kinematics and kinetics in male and female recreational runners.

DESIGN:

Gait analysis of 20 men and 20 women recreational runners.

BACKGROUND:

Female runners are reported to be more likely to sustain certain lower extremity injuries compared to their male counterparts. This has been attributed, in part, to differences in their structure and it has been postulated that these structural differences may lead to differences in running mechanics. It was hypothesized that females would exhibit greater peak hip adduction, hip internal rotation, knee abduction and decreased knee internal rotation compared to their male counterparts. It was also hypothesized that females would exhibit greater hip and knee negative work in the frontal and transverse planes compared to males.

METHODS:

Comparisons of hip and knee three-dimentional joint angles and negative work during the stance phase of running gait were made between genders.

RESULTS:

Female recreational runners demonstrated a significantly greater peak hip adduction, hip internal rotation and knee abduction angle compared to men. Female recreational runners also demonstrated significantly greater hip frontal and transverse plane negative work compared to male recreational runners.

CONCLUSION:

Female recreational runners exhibit significantly different lower extremity mechanics in the frontal and transverse planes at the hip and knee during running compared to male recreational runners.

RELEVANCE:

Understanding the differences in running mechanics between male and female runners may lend insight into the etiology of different injury patterns seen between genders. In addition, these results suggest that care should be taken to account for gender when studying groups of male and female recreational runners.

PMID:
12689785
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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