Gait is defined as the pattern of movement of the limbs, during locomotion over a stable surface. So basically, how you walk and run.
Gait analysis is recognised as a clinically useful tool to evaluate medical disorders, and biomechanical faults and help direct treatment and rehabilitation (Sheldon, 2004). Any pain can result in altered gait, often relying on short-term compensations to keep you running or walking. These compensations can overload areas of the body and lead to further injury.
However, it is quite difficult to detect these changes by yourself whilst running. This is where professional gait analysis can be effective. Gait analysis can detect long-term, inefficient movement patterns, which can then be used to direct specific rehabilitation exercises to correct flaws and make your running form more efficient.
At Melbourne Osteopathy Sports Injury Centre Gait Analysis is conducted by Osteopaths Dr Brendan O’Loughlin (Osteopath) and David Sokoloff (Osteopath). They both have a wealth of experience in this area, with Brendan O’Loughlin having completed a Masters in Gait Analysis.
The analysis begins with assessing the patient structurally and detecting any physiological limitations to joint motion. Next, functional dynamic movements are performed to confirm any structural findings found previously.
The Functional and dynamic movement are also used to assess muscle activation, control, stability, strength and coordination. The Patient is then asked to run on the treadmill whilst video is captured from different angles (side-on and from behind). From there, the video is analyzed using biomechanics software that allows identification of lower limb and torso angles and potential deficiencies in the patient’s gait. A review of the findings is then shared with the patient and referring practitioners.
Running is a huge part of many sports, both team and individual, and comprises the highest rates of injury compared to swimming and cycling. Thus, if you are new to running or suffering from any running related injury, a professional gait analysis can be of great benefit to your running health.
If you want to book a Gait Analysis session or discuss any aspect of your running, training or health with Brendan or one of our other practitioners, please feel free to ask a question, contact us or email us at info@
Quantification of human motion: gait analysis—benefits and limitations to its application to clinical problems. Sheldon R. Simon, Journal of Biomechanics
Journal of Biomechanics – Volume 37, Issue 12, Pages 1869-1880, December 2004