The aim of this study was to calculate the magnitude of the instantaneous muscular power output at the hip, knee and ankle joints during ergometer cycling. Six healthy subjects pedalled a weight-braked bicycle ergometer at 120 watts (W) and 60 revolutions per minute (rpm). The subjects were filmed with a cine camera, and pedal reaction forces were recorded from a force transducer mounted in the pedal. The muscular work at the hip, knee and ankle joint was calculated using a model based upon dynamic mechanics described elsewhere. The mean peak concentric power output was, for the hip extensors, 74.4 W, hip flexors, 18.0 W, knee extensors, 110.1 W, knee flexors, 30.0 W and ankle plantar flexors, 59.4 W. At the ankle joint, energy absorption through eccentric plantar flexor action was observed, with a mean peak power of 11.4 W and negative work of 3.4 J for each limb and complete pedal revolution. The energy production relationships between the different major muscle groups were computed and the contributions to the total positive work were: hip extensors, 27%; hip flexors, 4%; knee extensors, 39%; knee flexors, 10%; and ankle plantar flexors 20%.
1986. Vol. 55, no 3, 229-35 p.