Original Research

An objective measure of gait using ink footprints

M. Riley, M. Goodman, V. U. Fritz
South African Journal of Physiotherapy | Vol 55, No 2 | a560 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajp.v55i2.560 | © 2018 M. Riley, M. Goodman, V. U. Fritz | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 12 September 2018 | Published: 31 May 1999

About the author(s)

M. Riley, University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa
M. Goodman, Department of Physiotherapy, University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa
V. U. Fritz, Department of Neurology, University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa

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Abstract

A study was conducted to test the usefulness of seven temporal distance measurements (measurements of time and distance) in the assessment of functional ambulation in stroke patients. These measurements were obtained simply and inexpensively using a paper walkway and ink footprints.

The gait of ten hemiparetic patients was initially assessed according to the Massachusetts Functional Ambulation Rating. Each patient was then instructed to walk at his/her most comfortable speed along a ten metre paper walkway while velocity and cadence were measured. Ink pads were then attached to the heel and toe of each shoe and the patients walked again along the walkway.

Measurements of step length, stride length, stride length: lower extremity length ratio, foot angle and width of base were recorded and analysed.

Velocity and cadence were found to correlate well with the functional ambulation rating. Step length was found to correlate with the functional ambulation rating, but the longer step was not always taken with the affected leg. Stride length and stride length: lower extremity length ratio correlated well with the functional ambulation rating. Foot angle and width of base did not correlate with function but all hemiparetic patients showed a greater foot angle with the affected leg.

This method of data collection is inexpensive and easy to use in any physiotherapy department although the data analysis is time-consuming.


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1. Assessing Reliability of Measurement of Gait Velocity
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Physiotherapy  vol: 89  issue: 5  first page: 313  year: 2003  
doi: 10.1016/S0031-9406(05)60044-2