We have developed a three-dimensional biomechanical model of the human lower extremity to study how the location of the hip center affects the moment-generating capacity of four muscle groups: the hip abductors, adductors, flexors, and extensors. The model computes the maximum isometric force and the resulting joint moments that each of 25 muscle-tendon complexes develops at any body position. Abduction, adduction, flexion, and extension moments calculated with the model correspond closely with isometric joint moments measured during maximum voluntary contractions. We used the model to determine (1) the hip center locations that maximize and minimize the moment-generating capacity of each muscle group and (2) the effects of superior-inferior, anterior-posterior, and medial-lateral displacement of the hip center on the moment arms, maximum isometric muscle forces, and maximum isometric moments generated by each muscle group. We found that superior-inferior displacement of the hip center has the greatest effect on the force- and moment-generating capacity of the muscles. A 2 cm superior displacement decreases abduction force (44%), moment arm (12%), and moment (49%), while a 2 cm inferior displacement increases abduction force (20%), moment arm (7%) and moment (26%). Similarly, a 2 cm superior displacement decreases flexion force (27%), moment arm (6%), and moment (22%), while inferior displacement increases all three variables. Anterior-posterior displacement alters the moment-generating capacity of the flexors and extensors considerably, primarily due to moment arm changes. Medial-lateral displacement has a large effect on the moment-generating capacity of the adductors only. A 2 cm medial displacement decreases adduction moment arm (20%), force (26%) and moment (40%). These results demonstrate that the force- and moment-generating capacities of the muscles are sensitive to the location of the hip center.
View details for Web of Science ID A1993KX57600011
View details for PubMedID 8478351