An Overview of Gait Analysis

The term “gait” refers to the way that the human body moves from one point to another, such as walking or running.  Gait analysis is a study of how an individual performs that movement.  It is used to detect abnormalities that can cause pain and to fit a person for shoes (and/or) arch supports that will be most conducive to their gait style.

A gait analysis is typically performed by a footcare professional.  Professionals use various technologies to perform gait analysis.  Generally, the person being tested is observed by the professional as he / she walks over a specialised platform. Along with these observations, this platform also records information about the person’s gait & together, this information provides a detailed analysis about the gait of the subject.

Basically, the gait analysis reads the imprint of your foot.  This footprint provides the professional (and you) with valuable information about your gait. From there, the professional can begin to formulate a solution for any pain or discomfort you may be having in your feet / knees / hips / back.

Some basic gait information:

  • The curve that you see on the middle of your foot is known as the arch.
  • If you see about half of an arch on your footprint, then you have a pretty normal gait.  This shape allows your foot to collapse inward and absorb shock as it was intended to do.
  • However, if your footprint appears to be filled in, and you can’t see an arch, this means that you have flat feet.  Without a proper arch, your foot will collapse inward excessively, creating stress on your body.
  • If your footprint does not show any arch – just your heel and the ball of your foot — then you may have a high arch.
  • If you have a high arch, then the arch of your foot does not collapse as much as it should.  It doesn’t properly absorb shock, and this can create stress on the legs.

Gait Analysis Purpose

A gait analysis serves several purposes.  First, it can be used to fit athletic shoes.  Particular types of gait require different types of footwear in order to provide the necessary support for each foot type.  If you find that athletic shoes don’t seem to fit your feet quite right, regardless of what size or brand you try, it could be that your gait is atypical.  In this situation, you could benefit from a gait analysis in order to identify the type of athletic shoes that would best suit your particular gait.

Gait analysis can also be used to identify problems or injuries related to gait. Different types of injuries, whether they are sports-related or accident-related, can cause abnormalities in the gait.  Various medical conditions can affect the gait, as well.  In these cases, the individual could benefit from a gait analysis.  Armed with the information provided by the gait analysis, a physical therapy program can be developed or specialised footwear, braces, or arch supports can be customised to meet the needs of the person.

For many people, an abnormal gait can cause serious pain and prevent them from participating in the activities that they enjoy or even going about their normal, daily activities.  The solution can be as simple as having a gait analysis performed and getting customised shoes & arch supports that fit your particular gait properly.

If you have foot pain that may be related to your gait, contact Foot Solutions.  We offer a free gait analysis, and we can help you to find the solution to making your daily activities comfortable again.  Our highly trained professionals will set you up with a stylish pair of shoes & arch supports that fit perfectly and comfortably.  Visit Foot Solutions today.