Applied kinesiology research and literature compendium



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Part 1 of this study compared cervical motion ranges for two groups of human subjects classified as symmetric or asymmetric on the basis of a single clinical test for cervical sidebending. Data from the asymmetric group revealed limited mobility in all primary rotations and in secondary deviations. Part 2 reports on the concurrent, bilateral measurement of electromyographic activity for 12 selected muscle sites during the movements executed. Data revealed that muscles in the asymmetric group were slower to initiate action and were reduced in time and strength of contraction. Because muscles provide the motive forces for the reduction in range previously reported, these myoelectric data expand understanding of the disturbance in physiologic function that is indicated when a clinical test for response to motion in a spinal region is positive for asymmetry.

Contractile changes in opposing muscles of the human ankle join with aging, Vandervoort, A, McComas, A.

J Appl Physiol, 1986;61:361-7
This article demonstrates that strength declines approximately 15% per decade between the ages of 50 and 70 years, and approximately 1.5% per year after the age of 70 years, and decreases in strength are associated with falling in elderly people.

Manual muscle test scores and dynamometer test scores of knee extension strength, Bohannon RW.

Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 1986 Jun;67(6):390-2. 
The knee extension force of 50 patients was investigated using traditional manual muscle testing and hand-held dynamometry. The relationship between manual muscle test word scores and dynamometer force scores was determined using Kendall tau, as was the relationship between manual muscle test percentage scores and dynamometer scores expressed as a percentage of "normal." Percentage scores were also compared to determine if a significant difference existed. Manual muscle test scores and dynamometer test scores were significantly correlated (p less than .001). Percentage manual muscle test and dynamometer test scores were significantly different (p less than .001). These results suggest that the two procedures measure the same variable-strength. Manual muscle test percentage scores of knee extension may, however, overestimate the extent to which a patient is "normal."

Predictive value of manual muscle testing and gait analysis in normal ankles by dynamic electromyography, Perry, J.P. et al

Foot Ankle. 1986 Apr;6(5):254-9.
Eight muscles about the ankle of seven normal subjects were assessed by electromyography (EMG) during manual muscle testing (MMT) and walking. Three strength levels (normal, fair, trace) and three gait velocities (free, fast, slow) were tested. The muscles studied included the gastrocnemius, soleus, posterior tibialis, flexor digitorum longus, flexor hallucis longus, anterior tibialis, extensor digitorum longus, and extensor hallucis longus. Relative intensity of muscle action was quantitated visually (using an eight-point scale based on amplitude and density of the signal). The data showed that EMG activity increased directly as more muscle force was required during the different manual muscle test levels and increased walking speeds. No MMT isolated activity to the specific muscle though being tested. Instead, there always was a synergistic response. Both the gastrocnemius and soleus contributed significantly to plantarflexion regardless of knee position. The intensity of muscle action during walking related to the manual muscle test grades. Walking at the normal free velocity (meters/min) required fair (grade 3) muscle action. During slow gait the muscle functioned at a poor (grade 2) level. Fast walking necessitated muscle action midway between fair and normal, which was interpreted as good (grade 4).

Biodynamics of the Cranium: A Survey, Blum, C.

The Journal of Craniomandibular Practice, Mar/May 1985:3(2):164-71.
Abstract: Revamping a possible archaic view of normal cranial physiological biodynamics is a challenging undertaking. New ideas lie fragile for years awaiting the slow accumulation of evidence. This article presents substantial research answering the questions:

(1) Is it possible for the cranial bones to move?


(2) Do intracranial pressure changes actually translate into cranial motion?
(3) Are there pressure changes of cerebrospinal fluid occurring intracranially due to vascular, pulmonary, and other theorized pulse waves?
(4) What can interfere with the transmission of these pressure waves?

(5) What could be the consequences of increased and/or decreased cranial motion to the health of the body?



The author presents literature noting that dural tension and/or brain/spinal cord tension reflecting in the neural substance, nerves and associated blood vessels could well lead to changes of a pathological nature. This could be separate or could be in conjunction with associated CSF buildup of catabolites and resultant patho-physiological changes. The effect of cranial bone stasis or tension is clinically alleviated through gentle subtle manipulations of the cranial bones. The treatment is focused towards obtaining relaxation of the soft tissues of the brain and spinal cord in situ, through the dural extension into the sutures and cranial bones.

Physical measurements as risk indicators for low back trouble over a one year period, Biering-Sorensen, F.

Spine, 1984;9:106-19
This paper assessed the endurance of the erector spinae muscles. It was found that subjects with poorer isometric endurance in this trunk muscle had a greater likelihood of developing low back trouble in the future.

Effects of manipulation on gait muscle activity: preliminary electromyographic research, Hibbard D.

J Am Chiro Assoc 1983;17:49-51
This study analyzed the effect of chiropractic manipulation of the extremities on gait muscles.

Occlusal Changes Related to Cranial Bone Mobility, Libin, B.

International Journal of Orthodontics, 20(1), March 1982
This study reports that the author was able to change the transverse dimension across the maxillae as measured at the second molars by two and sometimes three millimeters using craniosacral therapy.

Detection of skull expansion with increased cranial pressure, Heifitz, MD, Weiss M.

J Neurosurg, 1981;55:811-812

Electromyographic analysis following chiropractic manipulation of the cervical spine: a model to study manipulation-induced peripheral muscle changes, Rebechini-Zasadny H, Tasharski C, Heinze, W.

J Manipulative Physiol Ther 1981;4:61-63
This study showed the effects of chiropractic manipulation upon the musculature, specifically an increase in finger strength after cervical adjusting.

Usefulness of electrophysiological studies in the diagnosis of lumbosacral root disease, Tonzola R, Ackil A, Shahani B, Young R.

Ann Neurol 1981;9:305-308
Abstract: Clinical, electrophysiological, and myelographic findings were correlated in 57 patients with the clinical diagnosis of lumbosacral root disease. Conventional motor and sensory (including sural nerve) conduction studies were normal in all patients. Electromyography, late response studies in different muscles of the lower extremity, the myelogram, or combinations of these tests were abnormal in 44 patients (77%). Of 36 patients (63%) with abnormal myelograms, 14 had normal electrophysiological studies. Twenty-nine (51%) had an abnormal electrophysiological or myelographic finding; although 8 patients in this group had a normal myelogram, 2 had an abnormal discogram and 1 an abnormal epidurogram. Electrophysiological or myelographic findings, in some cases both, correlated well with clinical signs and symptoms in 41 patients (72%). H-reflex and F response studies, when abnormal, helped in localizing a lesion in the appropriate root distribution.

Comment: This study demonstrates that EMG shows better correlation with neurological examinations than CT scans or myelograms for nerve root disturbances in the lumbosacral spine. In other words, muscle dysfunction correlates better with lumbosacral nerve root injuries than CT scans or myelograms.







The Application of Neurological Reflexes to the Treatment of Hypertension, Mannino, R.

Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, Dec 1979:225-230



Muscular Strength Correlated to Jaw Posture and the Temporomandibular Joint – Examination of a Professional Football Population, Smith, S.D.

New York State Dental Journal, 44(7);Aug/Sept 1978

Discogenic radiculopathy: use of electromyography in multidisciplinary management, Lane M, Tamhankar M, Demopoulos J.

NY State J Med 1978;78:32-36
This study demonstrated an 85% agreement between EMG evaluation and neurological work-up, evidencing nerve root compromise. There is evidence offered that EMG readings may be equivalent to subluxation determination. This study shows that changes in muscle electrical activity measured in distinct myotomes revealed nerve root disturbance. The study concludes that a positive EMG finding, indicating the presence of a lesion at the level of the root or proximal in the spinal cord, should alert the clinician.

"The Relationship of Craniosacral Examination Findings in Grade School Children with Developmental Problems", Upledger, J.

Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, June 1978; 77: 760/69 - 776/85.
Abstract: A standardized craniosacral examination was conducted on a mixed sample of 203 grade school children. The probabilities calculated supported the existence of a positive relationship between elevated total craniosacral motion restriction scores and the classifications of “not normal,” “behavioral problems,” and “learning disabled,” by school authorities, and of motion coordination problems. There was also a positive relationship between an elevated total craniosacral motion restriction score and a history of an obstetrically complicated delivery. The total quantitative craniosacral motion restriction score was most positively related to those children presenting with multiple problems.

"The Reproducibility of Craniosacral Examination Findings: A Statistical Analysis", Upledger, John E

Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, Aug 1977; 76: 890/67 - 899/76.
Abstract: A statistical analysis of the data from 5- craniosacral examinations on 25 preschool children is presented. These data would seem to support the reliability and reproducibility of the examination findings when the examinations are performed by skilled examiners. During all 50 examinations, the rate of cranial rhythmic impulse (CRI) was counted and compared with the pulse and respiratory rates of both the subject and the examiner. The results of this comparison would tend to help establish the CRI as an independent physiologic rhythm. A single-blind protocol was employed. All reasonable precautions were taken to control variables.

"Learning Difficulties of Children Viewed in the Light of the Osteopathic Concept", Frymann, Viola M.

Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, Sept 1976; 76: 46-61.
Children between 18 months and 12 years of age with and without recognized neurologic deficits were studied at the Osteopathic Center for Children. Their response to 6 to 12 osteopathic manipulative treatments directed to all areas of impaired inherent physiologic motion was estimated from changes in three sensory and three motor areas of performance. Houle's Profile of Development was used to compare neurologic with chronologic age and rate of development, and scores were age-adjusted. Results in children after treatment were compared with those following a waiting period without treatment. Neurologic performance significantly improved after treatment in children with diagnosed neurologic problems and to a lesser degree in children with medical or structural diagnoses. The advances in neurologic development continued over a several months' interval. The results support the use of manipulative treatment as part of pediatric integrative healthcare.

"The Trauma of Birth", Frymann, Viola M.

Osteopathic Annals, May 1976:197-205.
Abstract: Musculoskeletal strains on the newborn during delivery can cause problems throughout life. Recognizing and treating these dysfunctions in the immediate postpartum period is one of the most important phases of preventive medicine.

Relations between occlusal interference and jaw muscle activities in response to changes in head position, Funakoshi, M., Fujita, N., Takenana, S.

J Dent Res, 1976;35:684-690
Abstract: The jaw muscles responded to changes in the head position. Electromyographic responses to head positions were classified as either of two types--balanced and unbalanced. The balanced type of electromyographic responses of participants with normal occlusion changed to the unbalanced type after being set with an overlay to make a premature contact artificially, and returned to the balanced type after removal of the overlay. The unbalanced type of electromyographic response of participants with occlusal interference turned to the balanced type after occlusal adjustment.

Comment: In AK examination and treatment, the complexity of the TMJ apparatus is appreciated. The TMJ is part of a complex system including the bones of the skull and cervical spine, the mandible and hyoid bone, the related muscle attachments and other soft tissues, and neurologic and vascular components. This complex is often referred to as the stomatognathic system. The use of AK methods, especially challenge and therapy localization, greatly assists the practitioner in finding concealed or hidden TMJ problems.

Neuromuscular control of mandibular movements, Perry, C.

J Prosthet Dent, 1973;30:714-720

"Structural Normalization in Infants and Children with Particular Reference to Disturbances of the Central Nervous System", Woods, R.

Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, May 1973; 72: 903-908.
Abstract: The reason why there are “bent twigs” and some improvements that can be made in management of the mother both before and during delivery in the hope of preventing some of the deformities of the head of the neonate are discussed. Methods of examining the newborn infant so that early help can be given if he needs it also are considered. Signs in the older infant that point to the need for structural normalization are discussed, and case histories substantiating both the need for and the method of help are presented. Treatment is best begun with the maternal pelvis before delivery. Cranial manipulation is not a replacement for other therapies, but it can be a very effective additional therapy.

Alteration in Width of Maxillary Arch and its Relation to Sutural Movement of Cranial Bones, Baker, E.

Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, Feb 1971;70:559-564
Abstract: A case is reported in which cooperation between a dentist and a physician schooled in cranial therapy improved the treatment of a patient with severe traumatic malocclusion. The patient appeared with a severe headache. Although there had been no recent trauma, the patient had sustained fractures in the foot in a parachute jump several years before. The physician found that the parachute jump had compressed the patient’s occlusion to the left at the midline of the mandible. The dentist confirmed the presence of severe malocclusion, with open bite and deviation of the median line to the left during retraction to hinge centric jaw relation. Treatment by occlusal equilibrium and cranial adjustment for six months brought relief of pain and established centric jaw relation. Serial measurements of models of maxillary teeth showed the maximum lateral dimensional change between permanent maxillary second molars was 0.0276 inch, which is about nine times the possible error in measurement. The patient’s head bones moved along their sutures.

Roentgen Findings in the Craniosacral Mechanism, Greenman, P.

Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, 1970;70:24-35
Abstract: Although the craniosacral mechanism has been of great interest to physicians in many professions, a search of the literature failed to yield many reports of the x-ray appearance of altered cranial structure. This article describes efforts to develop a method of identifying altered craniosacral mechanics and of correlating the findings with clinical observations. Good correlation was found between specific x-ray findings and clinical observations made independently by a physician schooled in the cranial concept of osteopathy.

"The Growing Skull and the Injured Child", Dovesmith, Edith E,

Academy of Applied Osteopathy (AAO Yearbook) 1967: 34-39.

"Relation of Disturbances of Craniosacral Mechanisms to Symptomatology of the Newborn, Study of 1,250 Infants", Frymann, Viola M.

Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, June 1966; 65: 1059-1075.
Abstract: This study explores the possibility of a relation between symptomatology in newborn infants and anatomic-physiologic disturbances of the craniosacral mechanism. The primary respiratory mechanism hypothesis postulates a rhythmic cranial motion, palpable externally, that is the combined effect of the inherent motility of the central nervous system, fluctuation of the cerebrospinal fluid, the reciprocal tension mechanism of the dural membranes and their folds, and articular mobility of the cranial bones and of the sacrum between the ilia. Labor apparently has a traumatic effect on the craniosacral mechanism in some circumstances. Strain patterns within the developmental parts of the occiput appear significant in producing nervous symptoms. Flexion strain at the sphenobasilar symphysis, sacral extension strain, and compression of the sphenobasilar symphysis were noted in nervous infants. A significant relation is suggested between torsion strain of the sphenobasilar symphysis with restriction in temporal mobility and respiratory and circulatory symptoms.

An Introduction to Chapman’s Reflexes, Chaitow, L.

British Naturopathic Journal, Spring 1965

The role of binocular stress in the post-whiplash syndrome, Roy, R.

Am J Optometry & Arch Am Acad Optometry, Nov. 1961

Circulation of the Cerebrospinal Fluid through the Connective Tissue System, Erlingheuser, R.F.

American Academy of Osteopathy Yearbook, 1959:77-87
Abstract: Much of the fascia and connective tissue in the body is made of tubular structures. This study demonstrates that lymph and cerebrospinal fluid spreads throughout the body via these channels. Connective tissue may have an important nutritive function.

"Subclinical Signs of Trauma", Arbuckle, B. E.

Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, Nov 1958; 58: 160-166.

Muscular changes associated with temporomandibular joint dysfunction, Perry, H.T., Jr.

J.A.D.A., 1957;54:644-653

Electromyographic evidence for ocular muscle proprioception in man, Breinin, GM.

Archives of Ophthalmology, 1957;57:176-180
In this study, eye motion and position are factors shown as integrated with proprioceptors throughout the body, as well as those of the vestibular apparatus and head-on-neck reflexes. In applied kinesiology chiropractic methodology, a means for testing the integration of the muscles in the body with the visual reflexes has been termed ocular lock. The ocular lock phenomenon is theorized to be a consequence, most frequently, to cranial faults. There has been some substantiation for this premise, which demonstrates the possible effects of dural tension on the cranial nerves.

"The Value of Occupational and Osteopathic Manipulative Therapy in the Rehabilitation of the Cerebral Palsy Victim", Arbuckle, B.E.

Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, 1955 Dec; 55(4).

"Effects of Uterine Forces Upon the Fetus", Arbuckle. B. E.

Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, May 1954; 53(9): 499-508.

"Fetal Cranial Stresses During Pregnancy and Parturition", Pinder, D. E. & Mines, J. L.

Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, Nov 1954;  54(3): 164-167.

"The Infant - An Entity", Arbuckle, B.E.

Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, 1954 May; 49: 474-477.

"The Cranial Aspect of Emergencies of the Newborn", Arbuckle, B. E.

Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, May 1948; 47: 507-511.









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