Influence of Height on the Gait Patterns of Men and Women

María Gómez

Cristina López de Subijana Hernández

*Corresponding author: María Gómez Jiménez

Original Language

Cite this article

Gómez-Jiménez, M., & López de Subijana-Hernández, C. (2016). Influence of Height on the Gait Patterns of Men and Women. Apunts. Educación Física y Deportes, 126, 30-36.



Introduction. Separate biomechanical reference databases have traditionally been developed for men and women by identifying differences in gait pattern. However, describing a single pattern per sex is based on the premise that anthropometric measures such as height do not influence gait pattern once the variables are standardized. The purpose of this study was to analyze and describe gait pattern differences between height groups in normal walking. Methods. Using a 3D optoelectronic motion capture system, the spatial, time and kinematic gait parameters were measured in 29 women and 31 men selected and distributed in groups considering the 25th, 50th and 75th percentiles of height for the Spanish population. A comparison of means between height groups was analyzed (Kruskal-Wallis) (α = 0.05). Results. The results indicated that taller and shorter women showed a higher percentage of support (p = 0.031) due to the greater double support time. Women of the medium height groups presented an earlier toe off (p = 0.018) because of the shorter support phase. Shorter men showed greater ankle plantar flexion than taller men (p = 0.033) as shorter foot length entailed the need for greater ankle extension in toe off. In conclusion, height should be taken into account when describing gait patterns because it would be useful in planning treatment strategies, adapting robotic exoskeletons for gait re-education and the design of orthoses and prostheses.

Keywords: gait analysis, Height, height percentiles, Kinematics, space and time.

ISSN: 1577-4015

Received: August 1, 2015

Accepted: March 11, 2016

Published: October 01, 2016