Validation of a low-cost electromyography (EMG) system via a commercial and accurate EMG device: pilot study Articles uri icon

publication date

  • January 2019

start page

  • 1

end page

  • 16


  • 23, 5214


  • 19

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1424-3210

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1424-8220


  • Electromyography (EMG) devices are well-suited for measuring the behaviour of muscles during an exercise or a task, and are widely used in many different research areas. Their disadvantage is that commercial systems are expensive. We designed a low-cost EMG system with enough accuracy and reliability to be used in a wide range of possible ways. The present article focuses on the validation of the low-cost system we designed, which is compared with a commercially available, accurate device. The evaluation was done by means of a set of experiments, in which volunteers performed isometric and dynamic exercises while EMG signals from the rectus femoris muscle were registered by both the proposed low-cost system and a commercial system simultaneously. Analysis and assessment of three indicators to estimate the similarity between both signals were developed. These indicated a very good result, with spearman's correlation averaging above 0.60, the energy ratio close to the 80% and the linear correlation coefficient approximating 100%. The agreement between both systems (custom and commercial) is excellent, although there are also some limitations, such as the delay of the signal (<1 s) and noise due to the hardware and assembly in the proposed system.


  • Mechanical Engineering


  • electromyography; low-cost sensors; validation