Date of Original Version
Abstract or Description
A simple method is developed for robustly estimating a fixed dominant axis of rotation (AoR) of anatomical joints from surface marker data. Previous approaches which assume a model of circular marker trajectories use plane fitting to estimate the direction of the AoR. However, when there is limited joint range of motion and rotation due to a second degree of freedom, minimizing only the planar error can give poor estimates of the AoR direction. Optimizing a cost function which includes the error component within a plane, instead of only the component orthogonal to a plane, leads to improved estimates of the AoR direction for joints which exhibit additional rotational motion from a second degree of freedom. Results from synthetic data validation show the ranges of motion where the new method has lower estimation error compared to plane-fitting techniques. Estimates of the flexion–extension AoR from empirical motion capture data of the knee and index finger joints were also more anatomically plausible.