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Cavness 202

Gross Motor Control Motion Analysis

The Gross Motor Control/Motion Analysis research laboratory houses equipment capable of capturing full body movement, integrating muscle contraction data using electromyography, measurement of the corresponding brain activity, and the ability to combine with continuous real time joint angular movement in multiple planes.

Location: Cavness Building, Room 202

  • Research Types

    Vicon Motion capture system

    The system is comprised of infrared cameras mounted near the ceiling on the wall.  These Cameras record detailed movement using reflective markers placed at specific anatomic sites on the body.  The recorded-motion data is then combined with information on the individual’s height, weight, and body dimensions to graphically depict the movement.  Movement direction, forces acting on the moving body, and the body’s responses to the forces is recorded using specialized software and data processing equipment. 

    Electroencephalogram (EEG) Electroencephalogram

    Biosemi active II system (Multi-channel EEG recordings) allow us to capture ongoing electrical activity of the brain as recorded from electrodes placed on the scalp. So, in conjunction with EMG and motion analysis data, EEG data can provide the cost-effective analysis compared to functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to understand the spontaneous brain activities associated with fine or gross human movement.

    Wireless electro-goniometer and surface Electromyography (sEMG) system

    Biometrics wireless goniometers add to analysis of human movement by providing options to view movement of specific joints in multiple planes during functional movements like walking or performing activities of daily living.  The devices are lightweight and flexible allowing important portability.

    Electro-goniometerThe wireless sensors will be used under clothing and in conjunction with current equipment as well as newly purchased equipment to yield 3 D imaging of joint angles. sEMG analysis is a technique for evaluating and recording the electrical activation signal of muscles contraction and relaxation. So sEMG analysis can be used to identify neuromuscular diseases and disorder of motor control. sEMG and goniometry data will be synchronised and simultaneously collected for the understanding of motor control mechanism in human movement.

    Pressure mat

    Tekscan HR Mat™ is a high-resolution floor mat system for capturing barefoot plantar pressure, assessing foot function, and analyzing gait. This equipment can especially provide 1) pressure impulse (foot pressure over time), 2) pressure gradient (foot pressure direction), 3) trajectory of center of foot pressure, and 4) weight bearing parameters to explain the biomechanical or neurological mechanism of foot function during gait when synchronizing with motion analysis system and EMG. In addition, this device is used as an educational tool to teach rehabilitation exercise.

  • Research Projects

    Gross Motor Control/Motion Analysis Laboratory provides collaborative research projects among faculty and students and enhanced learning experiences that facilitate “evidence-based practice” for students in health education. The following are the research products and the courses taught in Class MPT 2009, MPT 2010, and DPT 2012.

    2009 MPT Class

    Graduate research projects completed in CAV 202:Bilateral Step-up2

    1. Skin Temperature and Sensation with Peak Plantar Pressures of the Foot in Individuals with Type II Diabetes.
      Students: Angela Galvan and Hannah Andrews.
      Mentor: Mansoo Ko, Ph.D.
    2. Peak Plantar Pressure in Subjects with Diabetes versus Healthy Adults.
      Students: Megan Cordes and Titus Reyes
      Mentor: Mansoo Ko, Ph.D.
    3. Repeated Bilateral Step-up and down Training and its Effect on Improving Functional Mobility in a Person with Hemiparesis.
      Student: Sean Hilgenberg
      Mentor: Mansoo Ko, Ph.D.

    2010 MPT Class

    Graduate research projects in CAV 202:

    1. Effect of posture training of muscle activity of distal limb during steady state walking in people with diabetes.
      Students: Greg Rickert
      Mentor: Mansoo Ko, Ph.D.
    2. Effect of Posture Correction During Gait on Plantar Pressure Distribution in Subjects with Diabetes: Research Proposal.
      Students: Andrea Lee Franz
      Mentor: Mansoo Ko, Ph.D.

    2012 DPT class

    Research projects completed in 2009 Fall PT 7330 Biomechanics class:

    1. Gait patterns with 10 and 30kg back pack
    2. Gait patterns b/w rigid and flexible foot
    3. Sway analysis: one limb standing
    4. Gait initiation: the relationship b/w TA muscle amplitude and backward distance of center of pressure
    5. Foot arch support with taping for peroneus longus muscle

    Course using Vicon Motion and EMG systems:

    PT 7330: Functional Biomechanical Relationships
    Title: Biomechanical Research Instruments, Gait, and Posture  

    Course using EEG equipment:

    PT 6740: Physical Therapist Examination and Management of Neurosensory Problems I
    Title: EEG Biofeedback - A New Approach for Treating TBI

  • Publications and Presentations


    1. M Ko, H Lewis, LC Hughes– Walking Speed and Peak Plantar Pressure Distribution during Barefoot Walking in Persons with Diabetes, Physiotherapy Research International. 2012 Mar;17(1):29-35.
    2. M Ko, M Bishop, AL Behrman– The effect of load-related peripheral sensory input during gait initiation in persons with moderate hemiparesis, Topics in Stroke Rehabilitation.2011 May-Jun;18(3):258-68.
    3. M Ko-Plantar pressure and gait in patients with diabetes, Lower extremity review. 2010 Oct:33-36.


    1. M Ko, YP Chiu, YJ Hung-“ Dynamic postural control in order people with diabetes during gait initiation” PT 2012: Annual Conference & Exposition of the American Physical Therapy Association, Poster presentation. Accepted.
    2. M Ko, A Franz, G Rickert-“ Effect of Acute Postural Correction on Plantar Pressures and Gait Characteristics in an Individual with Diabetic Peripheral Neuropathy” PT 2012: Annual Conference & Exposition of the American Physical Therapy Association, Poster presentation. Accepted.
    3. M Ko, R Vinyard, M Cole-“Dynamic balance control in elders: Sway analysis during gait initiation” PT 2011: Annual Conference & Exposition of the American Physical Therapy Association, Poster presentation.
    4. M Ko, A Galvan, H Andrews – “Skin Temperature and Sensation With Peak Plantar Pressures Of the Foot In Individuals With Type II Diabetes.” 2010 Diabetic Global Conference, Poster presentation.
    5. M Ko, SD Hilgenberg – “Repeated Bilateral Step up and down Training and its Effect on Improving Functional Mobility in a Person with Hemiparesis: A Case Report.” PT 2010: Annual Conference & Exposition of the American Physical Therapy Association, Poster presentation.
    6. M Ko, L Hughes, ML Cordes, T Reyes, A Galvan, H Andrews - “Peak Plantar Pressures in Diabetic vs Non-Diabetic Feet.” PT 2010: Annual Conference & Exposition of the American Physical Therapy Association, Poster presentation.
  • Sponsors

    Internal Grants:

    • 2009: Research Enhancement grant: Funded $5,494.
    • 2010: Faculty Development and Enrichment Fund Grant: Funded $4,500.
    • 2011: Principal Investigator; Gait Initiation in Persons with Hemiparesis, Research Enhancement Grant: Funded $19,185.

    External Grant:

    • 2008: Co-investigator; Gross Motor Laboratory, San Angelo Health Foundation grant: funded $167,918.