Gait is the way or style in which people walk from one point to another. This covers regular walking, running, skipping, hopping or any other activities. Gait analysis is a way to assess the pattern of these activities to highlight biomechanical abnormalities.
What are Biomechanical Abnormalities?
To be able to move efficiently, one needs to be fit and free from abnormalities. Bodily joints must be capable of providing adequate movement and muscles should produce sufficient force to generate an efficient gait cycle. If the joints are rigid, it can be a constraint in the range of motion consequently weakening the muscles. Thus the body must find a way to compensate the problems, which leads to biomechanical abnormalities.
Common biomechanical abnormalities:
– Hip hiking
– Increased Q angle
– Pelvic tilt – can be either anterior, posterior or lateral
– Ankle equinus
These are usually caused by muscular imbalances. However, they can sometimes be caused by structural problems, like leg length discrepancies.
What is Gait Analysis?
Gait analysis is performed only by professionals. They are called podiatrist or physiotherapist. Experienced podiatrists are the next level physiotherapists with higher education and quality. In today’s fast and expanding world, gait analysis are also available with many specialist running sports shops. But experts suggest, that gait analysis must be done through certified professionals.
Gait analysis involves walking or running on a treadmill. In some cases the podiatrist simply watch the way that a person moves. It includes studying the hips, knees, ankles and feet. In some advanced modes, a video recorder may be set-up behind the treadmill, which records the film of your gait cycle. This movie is then relayed to a laptop where the podiatrist sees the pattern of movement in slow motion and freeze frames to carefully assess the walking or running style.
Runners, athletes and sportspersons who require a high level of workout and activity should make sure they have had a gait analysis and purchase the correct footwear to avert future injuries. Below are some of the common overuse injuries associated with poor gait biomechanics:
➣Patellar tendonitis (jumper’s knee)
➣Iliotibial band syndrome (runner’s knee)
➣Lower back pain
Gait analysis is important for every person whether or not he/she is a sportsperson or athlete. If you are looking to get your gait analysis done, make sure you do it from certified personnel.
There are reputed certified personnel in Perth who can examine and provide you with a comprehensive gait analysis report.