The Gait Cycle
Simply stated the gait cycle is the manner in which we walk. Throughout the gait cycle there are different phases that take place:
- Stance Phase: Begins when the heel of the forward limb makes contact with the ground and ends when the toe of the same limb leaves the ground.
- Heel Strike: the heel of the front foot touches the ground.
- Mid Stance: the foot is flat on the ground and the weight of the body is directly over the supporting limb.
- Toe Off: only the big toe of the forward limb is in contact with the ground.
- Swing Phase: Begins when the foot is no longer in contact with the ground and is free to move.
- Acceleration: the swinging limb catches up to and passes the torso
- Deceleration: forward movement of the limb is slowed down to position the foot for heel strike.
Why We Observe Your Gait
A normal gait cycle reduces direct impact over weight bearing joints, such as the lower spine, hip, knee, ankle, and foot. If one or more of these areas are painful or stiff, the gait cycle will change to minimize use of these areas, leading to overloading otherwise healthy joints. When performing our biomechanical analysis we can assess the impacts and properly recommend a footwear and orthotic solution to meet your needs, help reduce risk of injury, or provide prevention to potential injuries and muscle fatigue.
At Fleet Feet Orlando, all of our guests receive a video gait analysis, which allows us to properly assess the type of shoe each person needs. We do not recommend specific shoe brands but instead focus on the level of stability or cushion appropriate for you biomechanical needs. There is no cost and no appointment necessary to have your gait analyzed. Gait analysis t is part of the professional service we offer to all our guests and is 100% part of FITLOSOPHY.