Objective movement analysis to inform safe return-to-play

Director of Studies: Dr Marcus Dunn (M.Dunn@shu.ac.uk)


Following anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstructive surgery, only 55% of patients return to sport. In adolescents, ≤23% suffer re-injury (i.e. ACL re-rupture), requiring further surgery and rehabilitation. Aside from surgical and rehabilitation costs, re-injury increases risks of juvenile arthritis, negatively impacting quality-of-life via reduced physical activity. Adolescent strength and proprioception recovery is highly variable. Current multifactorial movement assessments can yield inconsistent findings owing to poor specificity and sensitivity. A growing body of evidence indicates that analysis of within-individual movement variability provides insight into change within complex movement systems. Further, growth in consumer technologies capable of complex movement measurement represent an opportunity to identify clinically-feasible movement variability assessments.

Aim: Identify the application of movement variability as an objective tool to adolescent ACL rehabilitation.


  1. Review within-individual movement variability analyses and relevant consumer technologies
  2. Prospectively monitor rehabilitation to understand movement variability responses
  3. Determine measurement sensitivity and evaluate potential technologies


Adolescent, Anterior Cruciate Ligament, rehabilitation, movement variability, safe return-to-play.


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