The Relationship between Postural Stability and Lower-Limb Muscle Activity Using an Entropy-Based Similarity Index

Entropy (Basel). 2018 Apr 26;20(5):320. doi: 10.3390/e20050320.


The aim of this study is to see if the centre of pressure (COP) measurements on the postural stability can be used to represent the electromyography (EMG) measurement on the activity data of lower limb muscles. If so, the cost-effective COP data measurements can be used to indicate the level of postural stability and lower limb muscle activity. The Hilbert-Huang Transform method was used to analyse the data from the experimental designed to examine the correlation between lower-limb muscles and postural stability. We randomly selected 24 university students to participate in eight scenarios and simultaneously measured their COP and EMG signals during the experiments. The Empirical Mode Decomposition was used to identify the intrinsic-mode functions (IMF) that can distinguish between the COP and EMG at different states. Subsequently, similarity indices and synchronization analyses were used to calculate the correlation between the lower-limb muscle strength and the postural stability. The IMF5 of the COP signals and the IMF6 of the EMG signals were not significantly different and the average frequency was 0.8 Hz, with a range of 0-2 Hz. When the postural stability was poor, the COP and EMG had a high synchronization with index values within the range of 0.010-0.015. With good postural stability, the synchronization indices were between 0.006 and 0.080 and both exhibited low synchronization. The COP signals and the low frequency EMG signals were highly correlated. In conclusion, we demonstrated that the COP may provide enough information on postural stability without the EMG data.

Keywords: empirical mode decomposition; experiment of design; signal analysis; similarity indices; synchronization analysis.