Using the loading response peak for defining gait cycle timing: A novel solution for the double-belt problem

Oran Ben-Gal, Amit Benady, Sean Zadik, Glen M. Doniger, Michal Schnaider Beeri, Meir Plotnik

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Split-belt treadmills (SBTM) contain force plates under each belt that measure ground reaction force (GRF). Initial contact (IC) detection for each gait cycle obtained from the GRF is used for calculating temporal gait parameters (e.g., gait variability, step time, stride time). Occasionally, the participant steps with one leg on the contralateral belt (i.e., crossing) making the IC undetectable and the calculation of temporal gait parameters are compromised. We term this the double-belt problem (DBP). Objective: here we developed a complementary detection method using the loading response peak (LRP), anchor point for calculating gait parameters. Methods: we used GRF gait data from twenty adults (age 56.45 ± 4.81 y; 6 males) who walked on an SBTM. First, we used no-crossing gait periods free of the DBP to calculate stride time, step time, and stride time to stride time coefficient of variation and evaluated the true error and the normalized true error of the LRP detection method. Then, we used multiple comparisons between no-crossing data and crossing data. Results: we found that normalized errors (in comparison to the IC method) are ≤5.1%. Strong correlations were found between gait parameters computed based on the two detection methods (Intraclass correlation coefficient ≥0.97; p ≤ 0.001). Conclusion: detecting gait cycle timing based on the LRP detection method is reliable for estimating temporal gait parameters, demonstrating high correspondence with the gold standard IC detection method.

Original languageEnglish
Article number109963
JournalJournal of Biomechanics
StatePublished - 18 Sep 2020
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020


  • Gait analysis
  • Initial contact
  • Load response peak
  • Split belt treadmill


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