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Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
Oxford Gait Laboratory

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What we measure

Kinematics

Describes the spatial movements of the body including joint angles, displacements, velocities and accelerations.

This tells us what is happening at each joint, but does not tell us why. It does not consider the forces that cause the movement.

Kinetics

The internal and external forces involved in the execution and control of movement. We measure the ground reaction force with force platforms embedded in the walkway.

Plantar pressure

Distribution of pressure and path of pressure progression. The pressure plate is embedded in the walkway.

Temporal parameters

  • Cadence (steps/min)
  • Speed (m/s)
  • Stride and Step length (m)
  • Stride and Step time (s)

Electromyography (EMG)

Measurement of electrical impulses of muscle activity. Routinely large surface muscle groups can be measured with surface electrodes such as rectus femoris, hamstrings, gastrocnemius and tibialis anterior.

Deeper muscles can be measured with fine-wire, such as tibialis posterior.

Energy expenditure

We can assess the energy cost of walking by measuring oxygen consumption.