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Human Research Program

Ground-based Biomechanical Analyses of Resistance Exercise Using the Advanced Resistive Exercise Device

Completed Technology Project

Project Introduction

The new integrated resistance and aerobic training study (SPRINT) exercise prescription is being designed using ground-based evidence with the intent of increasing the loads experienced by the musculoskeletal system during in-flight exercise. Prescription optimization is dependent upon a complete understanding of exercise biomechanics in order to include exercises that are most beneficial to increasing crewmember health. Furthermore, variations in exercise biomechanics of specific exercises, such as the range of motion during the performance of the parallel squat, could have large influences upon the loads experienced by the musculoskeletal system. A detailed biomechanical analysis is required to determine which variations lead to the greatest site-specific joint loading forces and can be used to inform the optimal exercise prescription. The objective of this project was to determine the joint loads that occur during exercise in microgravity on the Advanced Resistive Exercise Device (ARED). The goal is to determine the best exercises for use during crewmember exercise during long-term missions.

There are various complexities with performing in-flight investigations. In order to maximize the potential for the most relevant data to be collected with minimal impact on crew time, we propose a two-phase program. Biomechanical analyses need to occur during actual exercise in microgravity to ensure optimal application of the results. However, since crew time is limited, ground-based evaluations should occur prior to in-flight data collection to ensure that the analyses performed on International Space Station (ISS) are completed as efficiently as possible. We propose to complete the analysis in three phases. Phase 1, which is detailed in this study, involved a detailed data collection on ground while subjects performed variations of squat and deadlift exercises on the ARED. Variations of each exercise included placement of the feet, speed of the lift, and range of motion and were examined. A computational model was used to compute joint loads and torques during each exercise. Six subjects (3 M/3 F) of small, medium, and large body types as described by NASA anthropometric standards were tested. The purpose of this investigation was to quantify the joint loading that occurred during typical resistance exercise on the ARED. The goal was to better understand the kinematic and kinetic similarities between exercise variations and to determine a subset of exercises that will be included in a future proposal that will include a biomechanical analysis of exercise on the ISS using the subset of exercises determined during phase 2.

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This is a historic project that was completed before the creation of TechPort on October 1, 2012. Available data has been included. This record may contain less data than currently active projects.