In order to perform accurate muscle testing, it’s important to pick a hand held dynamometer that is easy to use and can provide accurate results. According to Merriam-Webster, the definition of a dynamometer is an instrument for measuring mechanical force or power. In rehabilitation, there are many uses for the results of manual muscle testing.
Some examples of uses for manual muscle testing results would be in order to diagnose a deficiency or injury or to track progress of a rehabilitation program. When picking a dynamometer, it’s important to choose a tool that works best for a clinic’s needs. The MicroFET 2 is a handheld dynamometer which offers many beneficial features making it a popular choice among practitioners.
Benefits of Using a MicroFET 2 for Manual Muscle Testing
- Digital: The digital display makes reading testing results easy.
- Accurate: The MicroFET 2 is considered the industry standard for providing accurate and valid results.
- Wireless: With wireless capabilities, the MicroFET 2 can be used anywhere in your clinic with Wi-Fi.
- Attachments: Proper muscle isolation is essential for accurate results. Attachments can be used to ensure proper muscle isolation when performing manual muscle tests.
- Software package: When you purchase the software package, patient data is easily stored and organized.
Placement Guide: How to Use the MicroFET 2 Accurately
In order to have the most accurate results, it’s important to have proper placement of the handheld dynamometer. Here is a guide to placement recommendations for manual muscle testing positions.
- Shoulder Abduction: Working with the middle deltoid, place the dynamometer on the lateral surface of the upper arm, proximal to the elbow.
- Medial Shoulder Rotation: On the ventral surface of the forearm (proximal to the wrist), place the hand dynamometer in order to measure medial shoulder rotation.
- Scapular Adduction: Working with lateral angle of the scapula (proximal to the shoulder joint) place the transducer to measure adduction of the middle trapezius.
- Elbow Flexion: In order to measure elbow flexion, place the MicroFET 2 on the radial aspect of the forearm.
- Horizontal Shoulder: Muscle testing for horizontal shoulder works by using the dynamometer on the posterior surface of the upper arm.
- Lateral Shoulder Rotation: Working proximal to the wrist, place the dynamometer on the dorsal surface of the forearm.
- Scapular Adduction & Downward Rotation: In order to measure scapular adduction and downward rotation of the rhomboids, place the handheld dynamometer on the vertebral border of the scapula.
- Elbow Flexion: Testing for elbow flexion will be on the anterior surface of the forearm (proximal to the wrist) with the dynamometer placed on the biceps brachii and brachialis.
- Shoulder Flexion: To measure shoulder flexion, the testing must take place on the anterior surface of the upper arm proximal to the elbow.
- Shoulder Extension: Placing the transducer on the posterior surface of the upper arm is correct placement to measure shoulder extension.
- Horizontal Shoulder Adduction: In order to test for horizontal shoulder adduction, the dynamometer must be placed on the ventral surface of the upper arm.
- Elbow Extension: Working with the triceps brachii, the digital dynamometer must be placed on the posterior ulnar aspect of the forearm.
- Wrist Extension: To measure wrist extension, the device must be placed on the dorsal surface of the hand distal to the wrist.
- Hip Flexion: In order to measure hip flexion, place the dynamometer on the anterior surface of the upper leg (psoas major and iliacus) closest to the knee.
- Hip Extension: When you place the transducer on the posterior surface of the upper leg, you can measure for hip extension of the gluteus maximus.
- Hip Adduction: Working on the medial surface of the upper leg, hip adduction can be measured when the device is closest to the knee.
- Knee Flexion: To measure knee flexion, place the dynamometer on the posterior/medial surface of the lower leg (nearest the ankle) while the lower leg is medially rotated.
- Dorsiflexion of Ankle & Inversion of the Foot: In order to measure both dorsiflexion of the ankle and inversion of the foot, the dynamometer should be placed on the medial/dorsal surface of the foot distal to the medial malleolus.
- Hip Abduction: With the transducer placed on the lateral surface of the upper leg nearest the knee it’s possible to adequately measure hip abduction.
- Lateral Hip Rotation: To measure lateral hip rotation, place the digital dynamometer on the medial surface of the lower leg proximal to the ankle.
- Knee Flexion: Working with the Biceps Femoris, place the transducer on the posterior/lateral surface of the lower leg nearest the ankle, with the lower leg laterally rotated in order to correctly measure knee flexion.
- Greater Toe Extension: To measure extension of the greater (big) toe, place the device on the dorsal surface of the proximal phalanx of the toe.
- Hip Abduction (From Flexed Position): With the leg flexed, place the transducer on the lateral surface of the upper leg nearest the knee.
- Medial Hip Rotation: In order to measure medial rotation, place the dynamometer on the lateral surface of the lower leg closest to the ankle.
- Knee Extension: Measuring knee extension can be done with the digital dynamometer placed on the anterior surface of the lower leg proximal to the ankle.
Adherence to proper testing positions and protocols is a must when needing the most accurate results. A study, Validity and Reliability of a Hand-Held Dynamometer for Dynamic Muscle Strength Assessment, found that handheld dynamometers can provide precise results, but only as long as testing protocols were followed explicitly.
As we’ve seen, handheld dynamometers can be used for manual muscle testing for every area and form of movement made by the body. In order to adequately diagnose and treat physical deficiencies and injury it is necessary that practitioners have access to tools that are not only easy to use in order to adhere to testing protocols, but in this day and age, it’s important to be able to easily store and track those results. The Hoggan MicroFET 2 is a considered an industry standard that can not only provide precise results easily, but give practitioners the ability to track their patients, from diagnosis to completion of treatment.