Mechanical and Materials Engineering Publications


Upper Limb Motion Demands of Tasks of Daily Living: Applications of Dartfish Movement Analysis Software

Document Type


Publication Date

Spring 2-18-2019


Journal of Hand Therapy


Study Design

Quantitative primary clinical study.


Individuals with hand osteoarthritis (OA) predominantly have impairments in their grip strength and range of motion (ROM). Previous studies using 2D and 3D tracking techniques had multiple limitations evaluating the hands small joint movements. The Dartfish movement-analysis software can more easily measure these dynamic movements.

Purpose of the Study

The purpose of this study was in using the Dartfish movement-analysis software to establish a Grip Configuration Model and validate the hand joint angles during maximum-flexion/extension and 5 activities of daily living (ADL) gripping tasks in people with/without hand OA.

Materials and Methods

Forty participants were evaluated, evenly split into healthy control and hand OA groups. Two commercially available video cameras and small, removable markers captured the joint angle movements of the thumb carpometacarpal (CMC) and metacarpal (MCP) and the index MCP and proximal interphalangeal (PIP) joints.


Grip ROM deficiency of 17.24% and 12.67% were seen in the arthritic individuals for maximum-flexion/extension, respectively. The spray bottle task demonstrated a significant difference between the healthy and arthritic populations. Validation with a gold standard method (EM tracking) only demonstrated a 10.5° and 49.7° difference in the index PIP and thumb MCP, respectively.


Individuals with OA experience a reduced ROM for maximum-flexion/extension and the spray bottle task. Weakened flexion in OA participants could be due to location of OA and decreased grip strength.


This study represents the development of the Grip Configuration Model simplifying the evaluation and analysis of how people grasp objects which can give insight into how individuals with and without hand OA perform tasks of DL.


This paper is currently under review.

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