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Development and validation of a low-cost, portable and wireless gait assessment tool

CA Macleod, BA Conway, DB Allan (2013)

Background Performing gait analysis in a clinical setting can often be challenging due to time, cost and the availability of sophisticated three-dimensional (3D) gait analysis systems. This study has developed and tested a portable wireless gait assessment tool (wi-GAT) to address these challenges. Aim To investigate the concurrent validity of the wi-GAT in measuring spatio-temporal gait parameters such as stride length, stride duration, cadence, double support time (DST), stance and swing time compared to a 3D Vicon motion analysis system. Methods Ten healthy volunteers participated in the study (age range 23–30 years). Spatio-temporal gait parameters were recorded simultaneously by the Vicon and the wi-GAT systems as each subject walked at their self-selected speed. Results The stride length and duration, cadence, stance duration and walking speed recorded using the wi-GAT showed strong agreement with those same parameters recorded by the Vicon (ICC of 0.94–0.996). A difference between the systems in registering “toe off” resulted in less agreement (ICC of 0.299–0.847) in gait parameters such as %stance and %swing and DST. Discussion and conclusion The study demonstrated good concurrent validity for the wi-GAT system. The wi-GAT has the potential to be a useful assessment tool for clinicians.

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