Wearable technology to prevent ACL injuries and maximize performance
There are approximately 250,000 Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) injuries a year in the United States. Female athletes are 2-8x more likely to tear their ACL than their male counterparts. While an ACL injury can involve a direct blow to the knee, 70% of these injuries are non-contact and considered preventable. If an athlete jumps and lands with his or her knee collapsing inward (valgus angle) by more than 8°, the ACL is at risk for injury. Likewise, if an athlete lands with knee flexion of less than 80°, the ACL is susceptible to injury. ACL injury prevention programs have been developed to improve an athlete's biomechanics and are scientifically proven to prevent injury. Unfortunately, these programs require constant athlete supervision and correction. Therefore, cost and athlete compliance limit the effectiveness of these programs.
This project has two main components. First, The team needs to design a compression sleeve/pant that would incorporate a soft stretch sensor with an IMU sensor. This sleeve/pant should be designed to be worn during athletic activities. The second part of this project is to develop algorithms to covert sensor data into usable knee flexion and valgus angles. The sleeve will transmit this information to a handheld computer via bluetooth.
- Mason Schilling - Team Leader
- Lee Hermann - Communicator & BPAG
- Kennedy Pawell - BSAC
- Julia Martin - BWIG