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Digital Seminar

Module 2: Handheld Dynamometry - Testing Muscle Strength

47 Minutes
Audio and Video
Jan 02, 2019
Product Code:
Media Type:
Digital Seminar


Have you ever walked away feeling like you didn’t get enough information about your patient to be as effective as you could be in your treatment? Have you ever noticed that your patient is improving but the measures you’re using don’t show the progress you’re making? Then this is the course for you. Using a real patient, Richard Bohannon, the world’s leading expert in strength testing, will demonstrate why, how, and when to use a variety of clinically proven strength testing methods.


The ability to use muscles to bring force to bear on the environment is essential for everyday function. As adults age, their maximum force they can bring to bear on the environment (their strength) decreases. Clinicians, therefore, need to be able to quantify the muscle strength of older adults.


This course will begin by clarifying what we can actually measure and why we should bother to do so. Considerations relevant to all strength testing will be reviewed. Guidance and an opportunity to practice will be provided for four practical approaches to measuring the muscle strength of older adults in almost any environment. Specifically, manual muscle action testing, hand-grip dynamometry, hand-held dynamometry and field tests will be addressed. Finally, use of muscle strength testing in the context of the physical therapist’s overall management of an older adult patient will be demonstrated.


* Credit Note - ***CE Details Can Be Found Under the First Module


Richard Bohannon, EdD, DPT, FAHA, FAPTA, FASNR, FGSA, CEEAA's Profile

Richard Bohannon, EdD, DPT, FAHA, FAPTA, FASNR, FGSA, CEEAA Related seminars and products

Richard Bohannon, EdD, DPT, FAHA, FAPTA, FASNR, FGSA, CEEAA, is presently the Principal of Physical Therapy Consultants (Fuquay-Varina, NC). He has previously served as a Professor at the University of Connecticut and Campbell University. Dr. Bohannon is a licensed physical therapist with more than 40 years of continuous clinical experience in acute care, rehabilitation, outpatient, and home-care settings. He was a board-certified specialist in Neurologic Physical Therapy for 30 years and is currently a Fellow of the Stroke Council of the American Heart Association, the American Physical Therapy Association, the American Society of Neurorehabilitation, and the Gerontological Society of America.

He is a prolific writer with over 500 publications in more than 50 journals to his credit. His work has been cited more than 40,000 times. In 1996 he received the American Physical Therapy Association’s Helen Hislop Award for Outstanding Contributions to the Professional Literature. In 2005, he was awarded the Association’s Marian Williams Award for Research in Physical Therapy and in 2008 he was honored with the Association’s Jules Rothstein Golden Pen Award for Scientific Writing. Dr. Bohannon serves on numerous editorial boards; he was the Founding Editor of the Journal of Human Muscle Performance and has served as Editor in Chief of the Journal of Geriatric Physical Therapy and the Archives of Gerontology and Geriatrics. Currently, Dr. Bohannon’s research and teaching is focused primarily on the measurement, implications, and treatment of impairments (most notably muscle weakness) and activity limitations (primarily mobility) in older adult and neurologic populations. Dr. Bohannon is recognized internationally for his expertise in muscle performance following stroke, hand-held dynamometry, and mobility. Dr. Bohannon has served as a consultant to the Agency for Health Care Policy and Research and as a member of the American Physical Therapy Association’s Neuromuscular Panel of Expert which assisted in developing A Guide to Physical Therapist Practice, Part Two: Preferred equipment, and pharmaceutical) and the legal profession on issues related to muscle performance, mobility , and neurologic physical therapy.


Speaker Disclosures:
Financial: Richard Bohannon is a professor at Campbell University. He is the principal of Physical Therapy Consultants. Dr. Bohannon receives a speaking honorarium from PESI, Inc.
Non-financial: Richard Bohannon is a Fellow of the Stroke Council of the American Heart Association, the American Physical Therapy Association, and the American Society of Neurorehabilitation.


Target Audience

Physical Therapists, Physical Therapist Assistants, Occupational Therapists, Certified Occupational Therapy Assistants


  • Introduction to strength testing
  • Rationale and purpose of strength testing
  • Safety, mechanical, measurement properties and norms
  • Manual muscle action testing
  • Hand-grip dynamometry
  • Hand-held dynamometry
  • Field Tests
  • Other measures
  • Case Study
  • Conclusion


  1. Explain why the measurement of muscle strength is important in the physical therapy management of the older adult
  2. Identify mechanical variables that must be controlled if reliable measures of muscles strength are to be obtained.
  3. Using the grading schemes recommended by Bohannon, assign appropriate manual muscle test grades based on observation and handling of older adult patients.
  4. Demonstrate measurement of grip strength as recommended by the American Society of Hand Therapists
  5. Perform skilled application of hand held dynamometry for measuring limb muscle forces.
  6. Interpret dynamometer and field test measurements for a patient from whom they have obtained.



Overall:      5

Total Reviews: 1


Thomas K

"Well presented course!"

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