Spatiotemporal Gait Parameters as Predictors of Lower-Limb Overuse Injuries in Military Training

Shmuel Springer, Uri Gottlieb, Mariya Lozin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations

Abstract

The study objective was to determine whether spatiotemporal gait parameters could predict lower-limb overuse injuries in cohort of combat soldiers during first year of military service. Newly recruited infantry soldiers walked on a treadmill at a 15° incline with a fixed speed of 1.67 m/sec while wearing a standard military vest with a 10 kg load. Stride time variability, stride length variability, step length asymmetry, and the duration of the loading response phase of the gait cycle were measured. Injury data on 76 soldiers who did not report musculoskeletal complaints at initial screening were collected one year after recruitment. Multiple logistic regression analyses were conducted to determine the predictive effect of the gait parameters on lower-limb injuries. Twenty-four soldiers (31.6%) had overuse injuries during the first year after recruitment. Duration of the loading response was a significant predictor of general lower-limb injury (p < 0.05), as well as of foot/ankle and knee injuries (p < 0.05, p < 0.01, resp.). A cutoff value of less than 12.15% for loading response duration predicted knee injuries with 83% sensitivity and 67% specificity. This study demonstrates the utility of spatiotemporal gait evaluation, a simple screening tool before military training, which may help to identify individuals at risk of lower-limb overuse injuries.

Original languageEnglish
Article number5939164
JournalThe Scientific World Journal
Volume2016
DOIs
StatePublished - 2016

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