Stride Length but Not Body Borne Load Impacts Gait Stability

Document Type

Student Presentation

Presentation Date



College of Health Sciences


Department of Kinesiology

Faculty Sponsor

Dr. Tyler Brown


Military personnel are required to alter their stride length to run with heavy body borne loads during training. This may compromise their gait stability and increase the risk of suffering fall related musculoskeletal injury. This study quantified how running with body borne loads impact gait stability and whether it differed with stride length. Twelve male participants had medial-lateral (ML) gait stability quantified while running 4.0 m/s with four borne loads (20, 25, 30, and 35 kg). Each participant had ML margin of stability (MoS) calculated when using a normal stride (NS), short (SS, -15% of NS), and long stride (LS, +15 of NS) to run. The MoS measures were submitted to RM ANOVA to test main and interactions effects of load (20,25,30, and 35 kg) and stride (NS, SS, LS) with alpha level at p<0.05. Stride lengths (p=0.001), but not body borne load (p=0.298) had a significant effect on ML MoS. Specifically, participants increased ML MoS with SS compared to LS (p=0.006), but no difference was evident between SS and NS (p-0.080), or NS and LS (p=0.454). Participants increased MoS with SS to improve gait stability and decrease likelihood of injury.

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