Electromyographic and kinematic analysis of cutting maneuvers. Implications for anterior cruciate ligament injury.


Journal Article

The objective of this study was to qualitatively characterize quadriceps and hamstring muscle activation as well as to determine knee flexion angle during the eccentric motion of sidestep cutting, cross-cutting, stopping, and landing. Fifteen healthy collegiate and recreational athletes performed the four movements while knee angle and electromyographic activity (surface electrodes) of the vastus lateralis, vastus medialis obliquus, rectus femoris, biceps femoris, and medial hamstring (semimembranosus/semitendinosus) muscles were recorded. The results indicated that there is high-level quadriceps muscle activation beginning just before foot strike and peaking in mid-eccentric motion. In these maneuvers, the level of quadriceps muscle activation exceeded that seen in a maximum isometric contraction. Hamstring muscle activation was submaximal at and after foot strike. The maximum quadriceps muscle activation for all maneuvers was 161% maximum voluntary contraction, while minimum hamstring muscle activity was 14%. Foot strike occurred at an average of 22 degrees of knee flexion for all maneuvers. This low level of hamstring muscle activity and low angle of knee flexion at foot strike and during eccentric contraction, coupled with forces generated by the quadriceps muscles at the knee, could produce significant anterior displacement of the tibia, which may play a role in anterior cruciate ligament injury.

Full Text

Cited Authors

  • Colby, S; Francisco, A; Yu, B; Kirkendall, D; Finch, M; Garrett, W

Published Date

  • March 2000

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 28 / 2

Start / End Page

  • 234 - 240

PubMed ID

  • 10751001

Pubmed Central ID

  • 10751001

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1552-3365

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0363-5465

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1177/03635465000280021501


  • eng