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A link-segment model of upright human posture for analysis of head-trunk coordinationSensory-motor control of upright human posture may be organized in a top-down fashion such that certain head-trunk coordination strategies are employed to optimize visual and/or vestibular sensory inputs. Previous quantitative models of the biomechanics of human posture control have examined the simple case of ankle sway strategy, in which an inverted pendulum model is used, and the somewhat more complicated case of hip sway strategy, in which multisegment, articulated models are used. While these models can be used to quantify the gross dynamics of posture control, they are not sufficiently detailed to analyze head-trunk coordination strategies that may be crucial to understanding its underlying mechanisms. In this paper, we present a biomechanical model of upright human posture that extends an existing four mass, sagittal plane, link-segment model to a five mass model including an independent head link. The new model was developed to analyze segmental body movements during dynamic posturography experiments in order to study head-trunk coordination strategies and their influence on sensory inputs to balance control. It was designed specifically to analyze data collected on the EquiTest (NeuroCom International, Clackamas, OR) computerized dynamic posturography system, where the task of maintaining postural equilibrium may be challenged under conditions in which the visual surround, support surface, or both are in motion. The performance of the model was tested by comparing its estimated ground reaction forces to those measured directly by support surface force transducers. We conclude that this model will be a valuable analytical tool in the search for mechanisms of balance control.
Document ID
Document Type
Reprint (Version printed in journal)
Nicholas, S. C. (Krug Life Sciences Houston, Texas, United States)
Doxey-Gasway, D. D.
Paloski, W. H.
Date Acquired
August 22, 2013
Publication Date
May 1, 1998
Publication Information
Publication: Journal of vestibular research : equilibrium & orientation
Volume: 8
Issue: 3
ISSN: 0957-4271
Subject Category
Life Sciences (General)
Distribution Limits
NASA Discipline Neuroscience
STS Shuttle Project
short duration
Flight Experiment