Lower limb dynamics change for children while walking with backpack loads to modulate shock transmission to the head

Tarkeshwar Singh, Michael Koh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Backpack load carriage increases ground reaction forces and increases the stiffness in the upper extremity that can cause transmission of higher amount of forces from the lower extremity to the head. This study investigated the effect of load carriage and placement of load on the back on the shock transmission mechanisms amongst children. Fifteen primary school boys with mean age 10.01 (±1.31) years, mean height 136.40 (±10.08) cm and mean mass 31.83 (±7.13) kg completed the study. Subjects carried 10%, 15% and 20% bodyweight (BW) loads on two locations on the back, namely upper and lower. Results showed a significant reduction in pelvic and trunk rotation in the transverse plane and an increase in the upper body stiffness for loads exceeding 15% of BW. The lower limb results showed a reduction in the first peak force and cadence and a significant change in the walking velocity and time to the first peak force for 20% load. No significant differences were found for the load configuration but the upper configuration showed slightly higher shock transmission. The changes in the lower limb dynamics indicated that there are locomotion mechanisms in place amongst children to modulate shock transmission to the head.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)736-742
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Biomechanics
Volume42
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 16 2009

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biophysics
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Rehabilitation

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