Dissertations and Theses @ UNI


Open Access Thesis


Ankle--Wounds and injuries; Foot--Wounds and injuries; Academic theses;


Context: Assessing outcomes measure, with pedometers, allows a practitioner to monitor an injury throughout recovery. Therefore, to be utilized in practice and research, step counts should be able to effectively detect changes in physical activity, under free-living conditions, throughout recovery following an ankle or foot injury for student-athletes. Therefore the purpose of this study was to provide evidence of reliability and sensitivity for physical activity under free-living conditions, via step counts, as a measure of function during recovery (3-14 days) following ankle and foot injuries for student athletes. Objective: Determine the reliability and sensitivity of physical activity under free-living conditions, via pedometers, during recovery (3-14 days) following ankle and foot injuries for student-athletes. Design: Observational, Matched-pair. Setting: Freeliving. Participants: 16 injured collegiate (n=8), high school (n=4), and recreational (n=4) athletes with a foot or ankle injury and 16 matched pairs (matched for gender, age, height, weight, and activity level). Methods: Over 12 days, injured and matched pair wore a pedometer (except during sleeping, grooming, practices, and PE classes). Also, FADI scores were collected on days 3, 7, and 14. Main Outcome Measures: Step Counts measured via a pedometer on days 3, 7, and 14 following foot and ankle injury and F ADI scores. Results: The 3x2 repeated measures ANOVA indicated no significant interactions (F = 0.877, df= 2, p = .430), no significant time effect (F=0.715, df= 2, p = 0.50), or injury status effect (F = 1.85, df= 1, p = 0.201). A separate Wilcoxon test indicated that F ADI scores were significantly lower for the injured participants at day three (Z = -3.4, p < 0.001), day seven (Z = -3.3, p < 0.001), and day 14 (Z = -3.1, p < 0.002) when compared to the healthy matched pairs. Furthermore, the Freidman's analysis indicated that F ADI scores had a significant time effect for the injured participants (x2 = 19.96, p <.0001). Post hoc Wilcoxon analyses revealed a significant increase from days three to seven (Z = -2.7, p < .008) and days seven to 14 (Z = -3.2, p < .001). However, there was no significant time effect in FADI scores for the healthy matched pairs (x2 = 0.001, p = 0.99). There was a strong and significant relationship at day 3 (p = 0.703, p < 0.007) between step counts and FADI scores. Therefore, as the number of step counts increased or decreased, the F ADI scores increased or decreased, respectively. However, there was no significant relationship at days 7 (p = -0.218, p = 0.453) or 14 (p = -0.364, p = 0.200). Conclusion: Physical activity under free-living conditions, measured by step counts, is not a reliable or sensitive measure of function following foot and ankle injuries with student-athletes.

Year of Submission


Degree Name

Master of Science


School of Health, Physical Education, and Leisure Services

First Advisor

Todd E. Evans

Second Advisor

Windee Weiss

Third Advisor

Peter J. Neibert


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Date Original


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