There’s an App for That: Reliability of an iPhone App to Assess Upper Extremity Proprioception and Stability

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International Olympic Committee World Conference on Injury and Illness Prevention
Background: The ability to maintain joint stability and motion control of the extremities is important in injury prevention/recovery. Quantitative measurement of proprioception, especially the upper extremity, is difficult. Objective: We investigated the reliability of a custom iPhone app to compile accelerometer data and calculate a path length of movement over 20 seconds. Design: This study used a prospective test-retest design. Subjects completed three trials on each upper extremity (RA and LA) 48 hours apart (MWF). A convenience sample of subjects was used. Results: The mean path length for RA was 2669 with a standard error of 149, with LA being 2774 and 124. The intraclass correlation coefficient was 0.86 for the right arm and 0.74 for the left arm across three trials. Conclusions: The accelerometer in an iPhone 6 is a moderately reliable instrument for assessing motion control stability in the upper extremity. We plan to add additional data filtering to the app and repeat.
Injury prevention, Accelerometer, Upper extremity proprioceptive training