Examination of a foot mounted IMU-based methodology for a running gait assessment

Fraser Young, Rachel Mason, Conor Wall, Rosie Morris, Samuel Stuart, Alan Godfrey*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Abstract

Gait assessment is essential to understand injury prevention mechanisms during running, where high-impact forces can lead to a range of injuries in the lower extremities. Information regarding the running style to increase efficiency and/or selection of the correct running equipment, such as shoe type, can minimize the risk of injury, e.g., matching a runner's gait to a particular set of cushioning technologies found in modern shoes (neutral/support cushioning). Awareness of training or selection of the correct equipment requires an understanding of a runner's biomechanics, such as determining foot orientation when it strikes the ground. Previous work involved a low-cost approach with a foot-mounted inertial measurement unit (IMU) and an associated zero-crossing-based methodology to objectively understand a runner's biomechanics (in any setting) to learn about shoe selection. Here, an investigation of the previously presented ZC-based methodology is presented only to determine general validity for running gait assessment in a range of running abilities from novice (8 km/h) to experienced (16 km/h+). In comparison to Vicon 3D motion tracking data, the presented approach can extract pronation, foot strike location, and ground contact time with good [ICC(2,1) > 0.750] to excellent [ICC(2,1) > 0.900] agreement between 8–12 km/h runs. However, at higher speeds (14 km/h+), the ZC-based approach begins to deteriorate in performance, suggesting that other features and approaches may be more suitable for faster running and sprinting tasks.
Original languageEnglish
Article number956889
Pages (from-to)1-13
Number of pages13
JournalFrontiers in Sports and Active Living
Volume4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 6 Sep 2022

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