The Effect of Spring Assistance on the Amount of Lift required to Straighten the Knee

The idea of designing a knee brace to assist people in straightening the knee from a bent position was what the researchers looked at with their research. The researchers first designed a knee brace that would be strapped to the back of the knee using 1/8 thick plywood and a spring assisted door hinge. The brace was then strapped to a specially designed apparatus to test the amount of lift needed to raise the apparatus so that it was perpendicular at the hinge with and without the knee braces on it at both 35 cm and 70 cm from the hinge. The results showed a significant reduction in the amount of lift required to move the apparatus to where it was perpendicular at the hinge on the apparatus. The reduction in pounds of force needed to lift the apparatus to a perpendicular position was approximately 28% at 35 cm from the hinge. The same result was also seen at 70 cm from the hinge. This is due to that the total weight of the apparatus did not change, only the distance from the hinge changed, thus according to the properties of torque if the distance increases then the amount of force required will decrease This study was important due to the increasing amount of people who have a knee-related injury or have rehabilitative surgery performed on their knee and their knee can no longer function at its maximum capacity. The brace designed by the researchers in this study and the data collected could potentially be the framework for designing other knee braces that are designed to assist in the straightening of the knee in the near future.

Research Conducted By:

Eric Clark
Fraser High School

Mitchell Morley
South Lake High School