Rady Children's Specialists

Motion Analysis and Human Performance Lab

The Motion Analysis and Human Performance Lab, part of the Orthopedics & Scoliosis Center and Southern Family Center for Cerebral Palsy, assesses the movement of children,  adolescents and adults with neuromuscular and developmental disorders, as well as sports or orthopedic injuries.

The lab uses special sensors and other technology to capture and analyze a patient’s movements. The data collected from these sessions is then used create a 3D model of their skeleton. This computer-generated information can be used to calculate joint movement, pinpoint musculoskeletal issues that may require treatment, or determine whether the patient is developing typically.

The lab also employs force plates that further fill in the picture of what happens in the body when the patient’s feet (or, in the case of gymnasts, hands) hit the ground.

The lab’s expert staff can analyze specific actions such as running, pitching or swinging a golf club. They can also observe patients after orthopedic surgery and determine if they’re healing correctly, whether their mechanics could be improved, and when they might expect to play again. They may even be capable of recognizing certain movement patterns that could lead to problems down the road.