The effect of treadmill running on lower limb segmental co-ordination
Cardiff Metropolitan University
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Motor driven treadmills are often used in research to analyse kinematic and physiological variables. The success of transferring the results to over-ground running depends on the comparability of the two situations. The aim of the present investigation was to determine any differences in lower limb topological characteristics between over-ground and treadmill running during one gait cycle (toe-offto touch down). The hip-knee and knee-ankle joint couplings were chosen for analysis due to their involvement with pertinent factors with in the hierarchical model of running. Continuous relative phase was used to analyse segmental relationship with a root mean square difference determining overall variance. Variability analysis was determined through the standard deviation of continuous relative phase with a level of significance (P <0.05) provided by a two tailed /-test. The results demonstrated an apparent difference between both interfaces involving both hip-knee and ankle-knee couplings (15.09 to 28.45o and 15.86 to 33.99' respectively) with a signifïcant (P <0.05) decrease in intra subject variability inherent to the treadmill. In conclusion due to the alterations in topological properties it is the belief of this paper that the treadmill is an insufficient tool of gait assessment.
BSc (Hons) Sport, P.E. and Recreation
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