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Athletes with Versus Without Leg Amputations: Different Biomechanics, Similar Running Economy

Beck, Owen N.1,2; Grabowski, Alena M.3,4

doi: 10.1249/JES.0000000000000174
Brief Review: PDF Only

ABSTRACT Athletes with transtibial amputations use carbon-fiber prostheses to run. Compared to biological legs, these devices differ in structure and function, and yield affected leg running biomechanics that are theoretically more economical than those of non-amputees. However, experimental data indicate that athletes with unilateral and bilateral transtibial amputations exhibit running economy values that are currently well-within the range of non-amputee values.

1The George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA

2School of Biological Sciences, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA

3Department of Integrative Physiology, University of Colorado, Boulder, CO

4Department of Veterans Affairs, Eastern Colorado Healthcare System, Denver, CO

Corresponding Author: Owen N. Beck, Address: Department of Mechanical Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology, 455 Callaway Manufacturing Research Center Building, 813 Ferst Dr NW, Atlanta, GA 30332, Phone: 360-918-1247; E-mail:

Funding – This project was partially supported by the BADER Consortium, a Department of Defense Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs cooperative agreement (W81XWH-11-2-0222).

Conflicts of interest - We have no conflicts of interest.

© 2018 American College of Sports Medicine