Patellofemoral Joint Compressive Forces During Backward and Forward Running at the Same Speed

Date of Award

Summer 8-1998

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Rehabilitation Sciences


Physical Therapy

Committee Director

Martha Walker

Committee Member

John L. Echternach

Committee Member

Donald Sussman

Call Number for Print

Special Collections LD4331.P45 A47


A previous study found that the patellofemoral joint compressive force (PFJRF) during backward running was less than during forward running at free speed. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to compare the patellofemoral joint compressive forces during backward and forward running at the same speed. Ten runners (4 females, 6 males) between the age of 20-25 (X=22, SD=2) ran in backward and forward directions at the slow speed of 2.3 mph (1.0 m.sec-1). Using the inverse dynamic technique the knee extensor moment and PFJRF during the slow backward and forward running were calculated. Results showed that the PFJRF and knee extensor moment during backward and forward running were similar. The PFJRF and knee extensor moment were 3.5BW and 144.SN,m respectively during the slow backward running and were 3.4 and 141.6N,m respectively during the slow forward running. In conclusion, slow backward and forward running put similar compression forces on the patellofemoral joint. Moreover, backward running does not protect the patellofemoral joint from higher compression forces, but slow speed does.


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