Ground reaction forces, vertical loading rate higher in young boys with genu varus
Young boys with genu varus exhibit higher mediolateral ground reaction forces (GRF) and vertical loading rate amplitudes, a recent study reveals. These factors may accelerate joint degeneration and knee osteoarthritis onset.
“Therefore, practitioners and therapists are advised to conduct balance and strength training programs to improve lower limb alignment and mediolateral control during dynamic movements,” said researchers.
Investigators divided 36 young boys into two groups: those with (n=18; mean age 11.66±1.64 years) and without (n=18; mean age 11.44±1.78 years) genu varus.
Compared with controls, GRF values in the lateral direction was 95 percent higher in the dominant lower limbs of participants with knee genu varus (p=0.01). Similarly, GRF was 86 and 102 percent higher in the lateral (p=0.01) and medial (p<0.001) directions, respectively, in the nondominant lower limbs of patients with knee genu varus.
Genu varus patients also showed significantly higher vertical loading rates at the stance phase of a running cycle in both dominant (55 percent; p<0.001) and nondominant (36 percent; p<0.001) lower limbs.
Impulse amplitudes were likewise significantly higher in the mediolateral direction for both dominant (60 percent; p=0.01) and nondominant (46 percent; p<0.001) lower limbs of genu varus patients vs healthy controls.
In healthy controls, the time to reach peak GRF was significantly higher for impact (p<0.001) and posterior breaking (p<0.001) in the dominant limbs. In the nondominant lower limbs, the time to reach vertical GRF impact and posterior breaking peaks were 111 and 42 percent longer, respectively.