MSE Research Project Database

Neuromuscular control of shoulder joint motion: an EMG-driven modelling approach

Project Leader: David Ackland
Collaborators: Prof David Lloyd (Griffith University)
Primary Contact: David Ackland (
Keywords: biomechanics; magnetic resonance imaging MRI; musculoskeletal modelling; physiotherapy
Disciplines: Biomedical Engineering,Mechanical Engineering
Domains: Convergence of engineering and IT with the life sciences

The shoulder is one of the most complex and least understood joints in the human body; the roles of the muscles and tendons in generating dynamic shoulder movement are frequently debated in the literature. The aim of this project is to develop a patient-specific electromyography (EMG)-driven musculoskeletal model of the human shoulder to predict the loading patterns incurred by the shoulder muscles during activities of daily living. Participants will perform motion experiments using an optical motion analysis system. EMG will be used to measure electrical activity simultaneously in both the superficial and deep muscles; positioning of fine-wire electrodes will be performed using ultrasound. For each subject, a 3-dimensional EMG-driven musculoskeletal model will be developed, and simulations of shoulder motion performed to estimate shoulder muscle forces. This modelling approach will provide new insights into neuromuscular control strategies during human shoulder movement. This modelling tool has important applications in diagnosis and treatment of a range of neuromuscular movement control disorders including stroke and cerebral palsy. This project will be undertaken in conjunction with the Department of Physiotherapy at the University of Melbourne.

EMG-driven musculoskeletal modelling