Technology in Sports Medicine: How Gait Analysis Can Protect You from Chronic Injuries
Posted by Jenn F. on Tuesday, March 4th, 2014
Glut of Runner Injuries Indicate Need for Gait Analysis
Why get a gait analysis, you ask? Well, for starters — gait analysis is a key tool in preventing injury. A widely cited statistic is that 79% of runners get injured any given year.
Common injuries include:
– Patellofemoral pain (aka “Runner’s Knee”)
Running may seem as simple as putting one foot before the other, but sport participants need quality sneakers, flat terrain, and good habits that persist over time to stay in shape. It’s all too easy to miss wear-and-tear on your footwear or fall into sloppy mechanics when fatigue sets in. That’s where gait analysis can help.
Is Gait Analysis Worth It?
At face value, one might scoff at the $150 to $350 price tag of gait analysis, but when you consider the money spent on massages, chiropractor visits, physical therapy sessions, high-tech running shoes, compression socks, KT tape, and other performance-enhancing buys, you can consider gait analysis to be “a drop in the proverbial bucket,” as Jenn Savedge points out.
What Happens at Gait Analysis
At a typical gait analysis appointment, we’ll place markers on key points on your body that will measure resistance, joint movement, and running stride. At the Center, our foot doctors will put you on a treadmill that contains 5,000 pressure and force sensors that will identify areas of structural imperfection while you do lunges, squats, toe-touches, walk, and run. We’ll analyze the length of your step and stride, cadence, cycle time, and joint angle movements. We can show you video analysis that includes multiple angles and slow-motion.
We’ll not only let you know about areas of concern, but we’ll also give you pointers for improvement that will not only help you run faster but also avoid injury. Maybe you run with a slight arch in your spine or have ankles that roll inward. There are many subtle, eye-opening inefficiencies that could take their toll on your body over time.
Over the course of an hour, the podiatrists at our NYC sports medicine clinic will show you daily exercises to relieve tension, fine-tune your running form, and improve mobility. Armed with video footage, checklists, and graphs, you will have an expert opinion on the way your body moves.
If you have any foot problems or pain, contact The Center for Podiatric Care and Sports Medicine. Dr. Josef J. Geldwert, Dr. Katherine Lai, Dr. Ryan Minara and Dr. Mariola Rivera have helped thousands of people get back on their feet. Unfortunately, we cannot give diagnoses or treatment advice online. Please make an appointment to see us if you live in the NY metropolitan area or seek out a podiatrist in your area.