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J Electromyogr Kinesiol. 2013 Aug;23(4):948-57. doi: 10.1016/j.jelekin.2013.03.005. Epub 2013 Apr 16.

Sitting movement in elderly subjects with and without Parkinson's disease: a biomechanical study.

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Physical Therapy Course, Federal University of Uberlândia, Brazil.


The aim of the present study was to compare kinetic, kinematic, and electromyographic variables during the sitting movement between healthy elderly and in those with Parkinson's disease (PD) with moderate involvement. We hypothesized that subjects with PD would show difficulty in selecting the muscles for the task and that this could be related to the co-activation pattern and would be reflected in the behavior of some biomechanical variables. Fifteen subjects participated in this study, seven healthy subjects (NN group) and eight with Parkinson's disease. Electromyography (EMG) activity of the tibialis anterior (TA), soleus (SO), vastus medialis oblique (VMO), biceps femoris (BF), and erector spinae (ES) were recorded, and biomechanical variables were calculated, during four phases of the sitting movement. Compared to healthy subjects, the subjects with PD showed more flexion at the ankle, knee, and hip joints in the initial position and lower joint velocity. However, the EMG activity and hip, knee, and ankle joint torques were not different during all phases of movement. The sitting movement in PD subjects with moderate involvement generates EMG activity and joint torques similar to healthy elderly subjects. Only a reduced movement velocity was found in PD patients during the sitting task.

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