A new study has been published by a team of researchers, led by Dr. Tim Uhl, Professor and Director of Musculoskeletal Laboratory at the University of Kentucky. The study focused on the reliability of using EasyAngle as an assessment tool for measuring scapular mobility. Prior to this, measurements of the scapula had been somewhat limited in the clinical setting.

Measurements of upward rotation can be taken with an electronic inclinometer, however, reliable measurements in the transverse plane were only possible using bone-pin’s and radiograph/MRI or by 3D motion and video analysis. These systems are expensive and not commonly available in clinics. Dr. Uhl had been looking for a tool to easily measure the shoulder in all three planes in a normal clinical setting. He saw the EasyAngle being demonstrated at the Combined Sections meeting in 2018 and decided to take it back to the lab for some testing.

Oliver Silverson, one of the researchers in the team, set about validating EasyAngle against the 3D video analysis systems and confirmed that EasyAngle is effective, even when measuring the scapula in the transverse plane. This is thanks to the inertial measurement unit that removes the dependency on measuring against gravity. Abnormal positioning of the scapula can contribute to shoulder pathology and so being able to quantify this measurement enables Physical Therapists and Athletic Trainers to identify mobility impairments in the clinical setting.

About Oliver

Oliver is PhD student researching shoulder biomechanics and upper extremity rehabilitation strategies. As an athletic trainer, he is interested in investigating movement patterns in athletes with the goal of understanding the contributing factors to pathology and injury prevention. Oliver is from Maine and received his undergraduate education at the University of Vermont and his master’s degree from the University of Kentucky. Watch the podcast with Oliver to find out more about the study and his findings. You can listen to the EasyAngle podcast with Oliver where he talks about the study and why it is important to be able to measure the scapula in all three planes in clinic.

measuring scapular mobility

The Published Study 

You can read more details on the published study in the Clinical Studies section of this website or go to page 437 of the publication in the Journal of Athletic Training (USA).

If you have further questions, you can contact the EasyAngle team and we will put you in touch with Oliver.

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