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01.12.2018 | Research article | Ausgabe 1/2018 Open Access

BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 1/2018

Reliability and validity of a novel Kinect-based software program for measuring posture, balance and side-bending

BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders > Ausgabe 1/2018
Wilhelmus Johannes Andreas Grooten, Lisa Sandberg, John Ressman, Nicolas Diamantoglou, Elin Johansson, Eva Rasmussen-Barr



Clinical examinations are subjective and often show a low validity and reliability. Objective and highly reliable quantitative assessments are available in laboratory settings using 3D motion analysis, but these systems are too expensive to use for simple clinical examinations. Qinematic™ is an interactive movement analyses system based on the Kinect camera and is an easy-to-use clinical measurement system for assessing posture, balance and side-bending. The aim of the study was to test the test-retest the reliability and construct validity of Qinematic™ in a healthy population, and to calculate the minimal clinical differences for the variables of interest. A further aim was to identify the discriminative validity of Qinematic™ in people with low-back pain (LBP).


We performed a test-retest reliability study (n = 37) with around 1 week between the occasions, a construct validity study (n = 30) in which Qinematic™ was tested against a 3D motion capture system, and a discriminative validity study, in which a group of people with LBP (n = 20) was compared to healthy controls (n = 17). We tested a large range of psychometric properties of 18 variables in three sections: posture (head and pelvic position, weight distribution), balance (sway area and velocity in single- and double-leg stance), and side-bending.


The majority of the variables in the posture and balance sections, showed poor/fair reliability (ICC < 0.4) and poor/fair validity (Spearman <0.4), with significant differences between occasions, between Qinematic™ and the 3D–motion capture system. In the clinical study, Qinematic™ did not differ between people with LPB and healthy for these variables. For one variable, side-bending to the left, there was excellent reliability (ICC =0.898), excellent validity (r = 0.943), and Qinematic™ could differentiate between LPB and healthy individuals (p = 0.012).


This paper shows that a novel software program (Qinematic™) based on the Kinect camera for measuring balance, posture and side-bending has poor psychometric properties, indicating that the variables on balance and posture should not be used for monitoring individual changes over time or in research. Future research on the dynamic tasks of Qinematic™ is warranted.
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