COMPARATIVE STUDY
JOURNAL ARTICLE

Treadmill walking and overground walking of human subjects compared by recording sole-floor reaction force

Tateo Warabi, Masamichi Kato, Kiichi Kiriyama, Toshikazu Yoshida, Nobuyoshi Kobayashi
Neuroscience Research 2005, 53 (3): 343-8
16182398
In order to clarify differences of treadmill from overground locomotion, experiments were carried out on 10 volunteers (five males and five females). Sole-floor reaction force was recorded from five anatomically discrete points with strain gauge transducers of 14 mm diameter attached firmly to the sole of bare-foot. At first the subject was asked to walk on the laboratory floor at his/her preferred velocity. After the average velocity was obtained, the subject was asked to walk on the treadmill at the same velocity of average overground walking. Stance period at treadmill walking shortened to 93.3% (P < 0.01) of the value at overground walking. Coefficient of variation of stance period was significantly smaller at the treadmill walking than at overground walking. Strain gauge-floor contact times were shorter in the treadmill walking; heel 81.2%, first metatarsal 93.5%, third metatarsal 93.6%, fifth metatarsal 90.6% and at great toe 93.2% of overground locomotion. Cadence during treadmill locomotion was significantly larger than overground walking (106.6%, P < 0.05). These results show that when subjects walk on the treadmill and on laboratory floor at the identical speed, stance period shortened by 6.7% while cadence increased by 6.6% on the treadmill.

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