The aim of this study was to investigate – 1) the relationship between nonweightbearing and weightbearing ankle dorsiflexion (DF) passive range of motion (PROM) with knee extension and maximum ankle DF during gait and 2) the difference in the amount of ankle DF PROM with knee extension between the nonweightbearing and weightbearing conditions.
Forty physically active participants who participated in sports activities at least three times per week were recruited.
Ankle DF PROM with knee extension was measured using the nonweightbearing and weightbearing techniques; maximum ankle DF during gait was assessed using a three-dimensional motion analysis system.
Descriptive statistics for all of the data were calculated; normal distributions of nonweightbearing and weightbearing ankle DF PROM values and maximum ankle DF during gait were tested.
The primary findings of the study showed that a greater correlation was present between maximum ankle DF during gait and ankle DF PROM with knee extension in the weightbearing than in the nonweightbearing condition, although nonweightbearing and weightbearing ankle DF PROMs with knee extension were significantly correlated.
The authors concluded that maximum ankle DF during gait has a greater correlation with ankle DF PROM in the weightbearing than in the nonweightbearing condition because they are determined in the same measurement conditions.
The results of the study also indicated a significantly higher ankle DF PROM in the weightbearing than in the nonweightbearing condition; these may have resulted from the difference in the amount of force applied to the foot during the measurement of ankle DF PROM between the two conditions.
These findings suggest that ankle DF PROM with knee extension should be measured in the weightbearing condition when the goal of measurement is to estimate ankle DF during gait.
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