Hip Active Range of Motion (AROM) | Basic Physiotherapy Assessment
Active range of motion defines the range through which a patient can actively move with the help of the muscles acting over that joint. There are norm-values for every joint that you should keep in the back of your mind:
Flexion: 110 -120°
Internal Rotation: 30-40°
External Rotation: 40-60°
The goal of testing active range of motion is to detect possible symptoms like pain and determine their location, quality, and intensity.
Furthermore, you will be able to see how freely your patient can move in a specific joint. It is important to look out for compensatory movements when assessing active range of motion in a specific joint. For example in the hip joint, when assessing a specific movement, there may be compensations coming from the lumbar spine or the pelvis. To conduct active range of motion, make sure your patient is in a comfortable position and let them know that this assessment might provoke symptoms. It’s wise to start with the unaffected leg first and to instruct your patient properly, as this is a hands-off assessment.
Try to assess as many movements as possible in one position, before you move on to the others. For example, try to assess as many movements in supine position, before you ask your patient to roll over.
For flexion, ask your patient to bring the knee as far as possible to the chest.
To conduct active range of motion in the direction of adduction,lift one leg and ask the patient to cross the other leg underneath it.
To conduct active abduction, ask the patient to bring the leg as far as possible off of the bench.
To conduct active range of motion in the directions of internal and external rotation, ask your patient to flex the hip to about 90°.
To assess internal rotation, ask your patient to bring the heel outwards as far as possible. And to assess external rotation, ask your patient to bring the heel inwards as far as possible.
For extension, instruct your patient to lift the leg off of the table.
If you want to learn how to assess passive range of motion in the hip joint, click here.
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