The Effect of Joint Mobilization to the Ankle and Lower Leg on Static and Dynamic Postural Control Measures

Open Access
Author:
Fissinger, Jaclyn Marie
Area of Honors:
Kinesiology
Degree:
Bachelor of Science
Document Type:
Thesis
Thesis Supervisors:
  • Sayers John Miller Iii, Thesis Supervisor
  • Steriani Elavsky, Honors Advisor
  • Giampietro Luciano Vairo, Thesis Supervisor
Keywords:
  • joint mobilization
  • dorsiflexion
  • stiff ankle
  • ankle sprain
  • dynamic balance
  • static balance
  • postural control
  • squatting task
Abstract:
Objective: To determine if an ankle and lower leg joint mobilization intervention improves dorsiflexion (DF) and static and dynamic postural control in individuals with limited DF range of motion (ROM) in one ankle. Design: A pretest-posttest experiment design was used for this prospective cohort study. The independent variable was the intervention, either ankle mobilization or a placebo taping. The dependent variables included ankle DF ROM, static and dynamic postural control measures, and self-reported function. Participants: Twenty-eight (17 male, 11 female) healthy participants with limited ankle DF ROM in one ankle were enrolled in this study. Each participant was randomly assigned to one of two interventions: ankle mobilizations (Age=20.79±0.80 years, Height=170.50±10.00 cm, Weight=69.20±14.20 kg, BMI=23.59±14.20 kg/m2) or placebo taping (Age=20.50±1.29 years, Height=166.42±5.49 cm, Weight=70.60±14.50 kg, BMI=25.48±5.17 kg/m2). Measurements: Foot and Ankle Ability Measure (FAAM) score for the Activities of Daily Living and Sport Subscales, weight-bearing DF ROM, and center of pressure data (path length, average velocity, path/area, time to boundary mean minima, and standard deviation of time to boundary mean minima) during 10 and 30 second trials of single-legged quiet stance with eyes opened and eyes closed, and during a repetitive sub-maximal single-legged squatting task were collected. Baseline measures were obtained on the first day of the study, and the first intervention session followed. The second intervention session was two days later, with post-intervention data collection occurring two days after the second intervention session. Results: FAAM score for the Activities of Daily Living Subscale was significantly higher post-intervention in the manipulation intervention group (p=0.007) and taping intervention group (p=0.036). FAAM score for the Sport Subscale was also significantly higher post-intervention in the manipulation intervention group (p=0.016) and taping intervention group (p=0.005). No other significant differences existed when group, intervention, and time were considered together. Conclusions: Our finding suggest there is no significant change in DF or static or dynamic postural control ability after two treatment sessions of ankle and lower leg mobilization in healthy individuals with one ankle with limited DF ROM. FAAM changes indicate an improvement in perceived function with either ankle and lower leg mobilization or placebo tape intervention.