Cycling kinematics in healthy adults for musculoskeletal rehabilitation guidance

Haeun Yum, Hyang Kim, Taeyong Lee, Moon Seok Park, Seung Yeol Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Background: Stationary cycling is commonly used for postoperative rehabilitation of physical disabilities; however, few studies have focused on the three-dimensional (3D) kinematics of rehabilitation. This study aimed to elucidate the three-dimensional lower limb kinematics of people with healthy musculoskeletal function and the effect of sex and age on kinematics using a controlled bicycle configuration. Methods: Thirty-one healthy adults participated in the study. The position of the stationary cycle was standardized using the LeMond method by setting the saddle height to 85.5% of the participant’s inseam. The participants maintained a pedaling rate of 10–12 km/h, and the average value of three successive cycles of the right leg was used for analysis. The pelvis, hip, knee, and ankle joint motions during cycling were evaluated in the sagittal, coronal, and transverse planes. Kinematic data were normalized to 0–100% of the cycling cycle. The Kolmogorov-Smirnov test, Mann-Whitney U test, Kruskal-Wallis test, and k-fold cross-validation were used to analyze the data. Results: In the sagittal plane, the cycling ranges of motion (ROMs) were 1.6° (pelvis), 43.9° (hip), 75.2° (knee), and 26.9° (ankle). The coronal plane movement was observed in all joints, and the specific ROMs were 6.6° (knee) and 5.8° (ankle). There was significant internal and external rotation of the hip (ROM: 11.6°), knee (ROM: 6.6°), and ankle (ROM: 10.3°) during cycling. There was no difference in kinematic data of the pelvis, hip, knee, and ankle between the sexes (p = 0.12 to 0.95) and between different age groups (p = 0.11 to 0.96) in all anatomical planes. Conclusions: The kinematic results support the view that cycling is highly beneficial for comprehensive musculoskeletal rehabilitation. These results might help clinicians set a target of recovery ROM based on healthy and non-elite individuals and issue suitable guidelines to patients.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1044
JournalBMC Musculoskeletal Disorders
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by the Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) funded by the Ministry of Science and ICT (NRF-2019R1A2C2010150). This funding source had no role in the design of this study and will not have any role during its execution, analyses, interpretation of the data, or decision to submit results.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021, The Author(s).


  • Cycling kinematics
  • Musculoskeletal rehabilitation
  • Range of motion


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