Simply put, gait analysis is a method of assessing the way in which you walk and run. Gait analysis allows your physical therapist to identify biomechanical abnormalities in the gait cycle.
Runner: The athlete is analyzed statically and dynamically during a running gait analysis in order to provide a personal movement screen or "map." That "map" reveals the movement and programming of everything happening within the body while the athlete is running. We will obtain an up close view of the athlete's posture, structure, and "bad" habits. The running will be video taped by the physical therapist for further explanation to the patient. We will then be able to assess individual levels of mobility, stability, flexibility, and functional strength. The analysis of all these different elements taken together is what creates a complete picture of a person's gait. Once we have performed our full gait analysis we can help the athlete understand their strengths, weaknesses, imbalances, and "bad" habits. We can then prescribe a very individualized physical therapy program which will likely include a combination of soft tissue mobilization, flexibility work, strength and stabilization training, postural education and correction, as well as changes to gait pattern. Upon request the patient can be prescribed an independent home exercise program to trial on their own first before beginning a full physical therapy regimen.
Walker: A walking gait analysis is most beneficial for a person after they have undergone surgery, have a chronic pain/injury, or experience difficulty with balance and stability. The physical therapist will take a short video of the patient walking and then will sit down and explain any abnormalities found. The patient will then be prescribed either a home exercise program or a full regimen of physical therapy treatment. Physical therapy can help the patient understand their muscular imbalances, as well as structural and functional abnormalities. We will prescribe a very individualized physical therapy program which will likely include a combination of soft tissue mobilization, flexibility work, strength and stabilization training, postural education and correction, as well as changes to gait pattern.