What is Biomechanical Evaluation?
A BIOMECHANICAL/POSTURAL STUDY of your walking pattern and posture must be observed by using a video of you running, walking normally, fast and fast with short steps to access your gait cycle. The doctor watches the way that you move, looking in particular at your feet, ankles, knees and hips. The gait cycle is the continuous repetitive pattern of walking or running. The gait cycle is split into two main phases, stance and swing, with one complete gait cycle including both a stance and swing phase. This is relayed to a TV screen where slow motion and freeze frames can be used to show you your running or walking style. This form of gait analysis usually focuses on the feet and ankles. Another way the doctor can get an idea whether you pronate, supinate or have a neutral foot strike is to look at the wear of your trainers or shoes. These must be shoes which you have worn a lot so that there is a pattern of wear on the sole. The doctor will have you stand on a podoscope that allows him to carry out a static examination of the feet by providing a view of your footprints to reveal the foot’s load-bearing zones. The cause of your problem may not be in the feet, but elsewhere in your body
If it is found that there is an abnormality of your gait cycle. This can usually be corrected with a change in footwear, the use of orthotics or manual osteopathic therapy. If an orthotic is required, a mold will be taken of your foot. This, along with measurements taken during the biomechanical exam will be used to create your custom made orthotic.
We need to assess the joints (position, function, range of motion, etc.). Having joints capable of providing sufficient movement and muscles capable of producing sufficient force is vital to generate an efficient gait cycle. If joints are stiff (usually caused by muscle tightness), limiting range of motion, or muscles are weak, the body must find ways of compensating for the problem, leading to biomechanical abnormalities. Being able to move efficiently is important in avoiding injuries.
Many injuries are often caused, at least in part, by poor biomechanics. Runners and athletes whose sports require a high level of running and jumping should make sure they have had an evaluation and buy the correct footwear to avoid future overuse injuries. The following are a list of common overuse injuries associated with poor gait biomechanics: