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The Modified Gait Patterns During Stepping on Slippery Floor

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 May 2011

You-Li Chou*
Institute of Biomedical Engineering, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan, Taiwan 70101, R.O.C.
Jia-Yuan You*
Institute of Biomedical Engineering, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan, Taiwan 70101, R.O.C.
Chii-Jeng Lin*
Dept. of Orthopedic Surgery in Medical Center, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan, Taiwan 70101, R.O.C.
Fong-Chin Su*
Institute of Biomedical Engineering, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan, Taiwan 70101, R.O.C.
Pei-Hsi Chou*
Dept. of Orthopedic Surgery, Kaohsiung Medical University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan 80708, R.O.C.
**Ph.D. Candidate
***Associate Professor
****Medical doctor
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Upon encountering a wet or contaminated floor, people often modify their gait and posture to prevent themselves from slipping. This study was conducted to investigate the modification of gait patterns in healthy young adults as they approached and stepped on a slippery floor. Ten females and twelve males were instructed to walk at two different pacer speeds, 90 and 120steps/min, guided by a metronome, on a walkway with two forceplates placed at the center. During the step immediately prior to stepping on a forceplate with or without slippery disturbance, temporo-spatial parameters, selected kinematic parameters, and foot-floor reaction forces were evaluated in each cadence. The results showed that modifications of gait patterns for slip perturbation included shorter step length, increases of flexion angles of hip and knee joints,increases of plantarflexion angles of ankle joint with flattened foot, and decreases of the forward and backward groundreaction forces. However, it was found that such modifications for slip perturbation did not seem to efficiently prevent people from falling.

Copyright © The Society of Theoretical and Applied Mechanics, R.O.C. 2000

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