Motorized treadmills and weighted sleds are employed in clinical settings to improve lower extremity strength, power, and endurance. However, little is known about how the spatio-temporal parameters compare when walking on an even surface walkway, walking on a treadmill, or pushing a sled. This study aimed to examine the variations in spatial and temporal gait parameters when walking on an even surface walkway (EW), on a treadmill (TW), and while pushing a sled (SP). Forty healthy subjects participated in this pilot study. The mean age and BMI of all participants were 24.39 (± 2.86) years and 68.26 (± 13.92) kg/m^2, respectively. Spatio-temporal parameters were gathered using the Mobility Lab ADPM software and six sensors containing accelerometers and gyroscopes. Participants were directed to walk at a normal and comfortable speed for 7 m on an even surface walkway for two trials. Next, the subjects walked on the treadmill for two trials at a speed based on age. For males aged <30 and females 20-40 years of age, the speed was 1.3 m/s. While for males aged 30 or older, the speed was set to 1.4 m/s. Finally, participants were instructed to walk at their normal pace while pushing a 60 lb sled for 9.1 meters (m). Treadmill walking provoked a significant increase in temporal variables, whereas pushing a sled significantly reduced the temporal variables. Treadmill walking resulted in a decrease in double limb support time and an increase in single-limb support time compared with even surface walking. Although cadence was greater when walking on a treadmill versus an even surface walkway, the difference may be attributed to a fixed speed on the treadmill, which was determined by age. Treadmill gait training is recommended for subjects that could benefit from an increase single limb support time to improve dynamic balance such as Parkinson patients. On the other hand, for those participants that dynamic activities are challenging, such as concussion and vestibular patients, pushing the sled will slow down gait parameters allowing gait training with an added resistance benefit. Finally, it has been proposed that further investigation should focus on the differences in lower extremity muscle activation and recruitment patterns under various walking conditions.
KeywordsGait parameters, Walking, Treadmill,
- A. Guzik, M. Drużbicki, A. Wolan-Nieroda, Assessment of two gait training models: conventional physical therapy and treadmill exercise, in terms of their effectiveness after stroke, Hippokratia, 22(2) (2018) 51–59.
- B. Langhammer, J. K. Stanghelle, Exercise on a treadmill or walking outdoors? A randomized controlled trial comparing effectiveness of two walking exercise programmes late after stroke, Clinical Rehabilitation, 24(1) (2010) 46-54.
- A.P. Marsh, J.A. Katula, C.F. Pacchia, L.C. Johnson, K.L. Koury, W. J. Rejeski,. Effect of treadmill and overground walking on function and attitudes in older adults, Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 38(6) (2006) 1157–1164.
- Y.R. Mao, W.L. Lo, Q. Lin, L. Li, X. Xiao, P. Raghavan, D.F. Huang, The Effect of Body Weight Support Treadmill Training on Gait Recovery, Proximal Lower Limb Motor Pattern, and Balance in Patients with Subacute Stroke, BioMed Research international, 2015, (2015) 175719.
- J. Tipman, (2020) How to Use a Sled Push to Build Power, Speed, and Endurance. Healthline.
- M. Drużbicki, A. Guzik, G. Przysada, A. Kwolek, A. Brzozowska-Magoń, Efficacy of gait training using a treadmill with and without visual biofeedback in patients after stroke: A randomized study, Journal of rehabilitation medicine, 47(5) (2015) 419-425.
- J. Mehrholz, J. Kugler, A. Storch, M. Pohl, B. Elsner, K. Hirsch, Treadmill training for patients with Parkinson's disease, The Cochrane database of systematic reviews, 22 (8) (2015).
- Y.G. Han, C.K. Yun, Effectiveness of treadmill training on gait function in children with cerebral palsy: meta-analysis, Journal of exercise rehabilitation, 16(1) (2020) 10-19.
- S. Pirouzi, A.R. Motealleh, F. Fallahzadeh, M.A. Fallahzadeh, Effectiveness of treadmill training on balance control in elderly people: a randomized controlled clinical trial, Iranian journal of medical sciences, 39(6) (2014) 565–570.
- N.M. Pereira, M.J.P.M. Araya, M.E. Scheicher, (2020) Effectiveness of a treadmill training programme in improving the postural balance on institutionalized older adults, Journal of aging research, (2020).
- B.D. Cakit, M. Saracoglu, H. Genc, H.R. Erdem, L. Inan, the effects of incremental speed-dependent treadmill training on postural instability and fear of falling in Parkinson's disease, Clinical rehabilitation, 21(8) (2007) 698-705.
- Martin G. Rosario, Neuromuscular timing modification in responses to increased speed and proportional resistance while pushing a sled in young adults, European Journal of Human Movement, 44 (2020) 50-66.
- M.G. Rosario, K. Keitel, & J. Meyer, Constant Resistance During Proportional Speed Provoked Higher Lower Limb Proximal Musculature Recruitment than Distal Musculature in Young Healthy Adults, International Journal of Physical Education, Fitness and Sports, 10(3) (2021) 92–102.
- M.G. Rosario, M. Mathis, Lower limb muscle activation and kinematics modifications of young healthy adults while pushing a variable resistance sled, Journal of Human Sport and Exercise, 16(4) (2020) 809-823.
- R.W. Bohannon, A.W. Andrews, Normal walking speed: a descriptive meta-analysis, Physiotherapy, 97(3) (2011) 82-189.
- C. Bowman, M.G. Rosario, Does Balance Fluctuates Depending on Leg Dominance? A Cross-sectional Study, J Rehab Pract Res, 2(2) (2021) 127.
- J. Isacson, L. Gransberg, E. Knutsson, Three-dimensional electrogoniometric gait recording, Journal of biomechanics, 19(8) (1986) 627-635.
- Murray, M. P., Spurr, G. B., Sepic, S. B., Gardner, G. M., & Mollinger, L. A. (1985). Treadmill Vs. Floor Walking: Kinematics, Electromyogram, and Heart Rate, Journal of applied physiology, 59(1), 87–91.
- S.J. Lee, J. Hidler, (2008) Biomechanics of overground vs. treadmill walking in healthy individuals, Journal of applied physiology, 104(3) (1985) 747–755.
- F. Yang, G.A. King, Dynamic gait stability of treadmill versus overground walking in young adults. Journal of electromyography and kinesiology: official journal of the International Society of Electrophysiological Kinesiology, 31 (2016) 81–87.
- A. Shumway-Cook, M.H. Woollacott, (2007) Motor control: Translating research into clinical practice, Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.
- M.G. Rosario, N.D. Mbue, A. Jose, (2020) Temporo-spatial gait adaptations while walking on different surfaces in Latino-Hispanic adults with controlled type II diabetes, Journal of Human Sport and Exercise, 17(3) (2022).
- T.D.A. Busch, Y.A. Duarte, D. Pires Nunes, M.L. Lebrão, M.S. Naslavsky, A.D. S. Rodrigues, E. Amaro, Factors associated with lower gait speed among the elderly living in a developing country: a cross-sectional population-based study, BMC Geriatrics, 15, (35) (2015).
- M.G. Rosario, Daniel Heistand, Catie Lewis, Natalie Valdez, Matthew Nevarez, Mark Weber. (2021b). Lower Limb Muscle Activity Adjustment and Lactate Variation in Response to Increased Speed with Proportional Resistance in Young Adults, Internal Journal of Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation, 4(18) (2021).
- M.G. Rosario, K. Keitel, J. Meyer, M. Weber, Constant Resistant at Different Speeds while Pushing a Sled Prompts Different Adaptations in Neuromuscular Timing on Back and Lower Limb Muscles, International Journal of Physical Education, Fitness and Sports, 11(1), (2022a) 66-74.
- M. Rosario, C. Pagel, W. Miller, & M. Weber, Pushing A Sled with Constant Resistance and Controlled Cadence Induces Lower Limb Musculature Quicker Activation Response and Prolongs Duration with Faster Speed, European Journal of Sport Sciences 1(2) (2022b) 23–28.