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pwieber81
11-09-2009, 02:44 PM
Thanks to all who took time to answer or think about it. The answers are summarized below. (By the way, the biomch-l list is truly wonderful, we are far from having similar lists in robotics!)

I finally happened to find the following piece of history in a 2005 paper by Popovic, Goswami & Herr in the International Journal of Robotics Research:

In the book On the Movement of Animals, Borelli (1680) proposed a biomechanical point that he called the support point, a ground reference location where the resultant ground reaction force acts during legged locomotion. Much later, upon the invention of the force platform, Borelliís support point, or equivalently the center of pressure for flat ground surfaces, was measured for the first time (Elftman and Manter 1934; Elftman 1938).

Borelli, G. A. 1680. De Motu Animalium (English) Translated by P. Maquet, Springer- Verlag, Berlin, Heidelberg, 1989.

Elftman, H. and Manter, J. 1934. A cinematic study of the distribution of pressure in the human foot. Science. 80: 484.

The book by Borelli can be found in its original latin form on Google books, for whoever can read latin, and the consensus that can be drawn from the answers given by biomch-l readers converge to the 1934 paper by Elftman and Manter.

Thanks again to all of you!
Pierre-Brice Wieber.


> Didn't Elftmann quantify and describe CoP in one of his publications from the 1930s?
>
> Jesse


> I'm not familiar with the paper you referenced, but various researchers were calculating resultant joint moments in humans using inverse dynamics (which necessitates the calculation of the CoP from ground reaction records) prior to 1975, although the CoP was not the primary outcome variable:
>
> Elftman H (1939). Forces and energy changes in the leg during walking. American Journal of Physiology, 125, 339-356.
>
> Elftman H (1940). The work done by muscles in running. American Journal of Physiology, 129, 672-684.
>
> Bresler B and Frankel JP (1950). The forces and moments in the leg during level walking. Transactions of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, 72, 27-36.
>
> Ross


> Extract from
>
> Variability of the Center of Pressure
>
> Pattern Integral During Walking
>
> THOMAS G. MCPOIL, PhD, PT, ATC*
>
> MARK W. CORNWALL, PhD, PT, CPed*
>
> J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 88(6): 259-267, 1998
>
> References dat back to 1950 and 1939
>
> The center of pressure pattern (COPP), or force line,
>
> has been used to describe abnormal foot movement
>
> during gait1-3 and as a method of assessing the effectiveness
>
> of foot orthoses.4-7 Elftman8 was one of the
>
> first researchers to describe the COPP in normal feet
>
> during walking. Measurements of center of pressure
>
> obtained from a modern-day force platform were initially
>
> described by Cunningham3 in 1950. Until the introduction
>
> of floor-mounted transducer matrix platforms
>
> for the measurement of plantar pressures, the
>
> force platform was the primary method of recording
>
> the COPP.
>
> -------------------------------------------
>
> 3. CUNNINGHAM DM: Components of floor reactions during
>
> walking. Prosthetic Devices Research Report, Institute
>
> of Engineering Research, University of California,
>
> Berkeley, Series 11, Issue 14, 1950.
>
> -------------------------------------------------
>
> 8. ELFTMAN H: The force exerted by the ground in walking
>
> [in German]. Arbeitphysiologie 10: 485, 1939.
>
> --------------------------------------------------
>
> Cheers Dave Smith
>


> What a fascinating observation, Pierre!
>
> It's true that Herb Elftmann was the first to make a 6 degree of freedom force platform and describe calculation of the CoP.
>
> Elftman H (1934) A cinematic study of the distribution of pressure in the human foot. Anat. Rec. 59: 481-487.
>
> But before that, Marey measured it by a pneumatic method - I don't know for sure, but I suspect he must have measured CoP directly:
>
> http://www.univie.ac.at/cga/history/enlightenment.html
>
> Come to think of it, Braune and Fischer must have also used it - I think they just estimated it from film?
>
> Chris


> My first impulse was to point towards Marey but then I remembered that
> he only had a fairly small air chamber embedded in the sole of the shoe
> (under the forefoot) so that he could - by no means - calculate the
> center of pressure because that would have required a completely
> instrumented sole.
> You can get an idea fromt he attached images.
>
> Cheers,
>
> Dieter Rosenbaum...


> I guess, with Chris Kirtley, that Elftman was the first to make and use a 6-dof force plate. Marey had a (pneumatic!) force plate, but it measured only vertical forces, as far as I can see. Braune and Fischer had no force plate at all! They calculated the accelerations of all body segments, including the trunk, to do their inverse dynamics. The errors must have been enormous, and the calculations took 10 years....
> The term 'centre of pressure' comes indeed from aerodynamics, it was already important in sailing boats, but I don't know when it was first used scientifically.
> Interesting question,
> Yours
> At Hof


> Just my opinion: The COP is nothing specific to Biomechanics. Although this
> term is extensively used in gait analysis the concept of the COP is widely
> used in Mechanics in general. Everywhere where you have a pressure
> distribution over a (flat) surface you can define a COP. I have to admit
> that I have no idea how "old" this term is and who used it for the first
> time in the sense we use it today, but I would guess that it is older than
> 100 years. So probably it will be not so easy to "find the roots" ;)
>
> Kind regards
> Heinz-Bodo SCHMIEDMAYER


> Not even close. The earliest I have is Herbert Elftman, 1934.
>
> Elftman, H. (1934) A cinematic study of the distribution of pressure in
> the human foot. The Anatomical Record, 59:481-491.


> Check out this reference - - -
> Elftman H: A cinematic study of the distribution of pressure
> in the human foot. Anat Rec 59:481-491, 1934
>
> Dave Carmines


> Try to query P M Gagey, he may know about the history.
>
> http://pierremarie.gagey.perso.sfr.fr/histoire-a.htm
>
> regards Frank Borg