Relationship between kinematic gait parameters during three gait modifications designed to reduce peak knee abduction moment.

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Gait modifications designed to change a single kinematic parameter have reduced first peak internal knee abduction moment (PKAM). Prior research suggests unintended temporospatial and kinematic changes occur naturally while performing these modifications. We aimed to investigate i) the concomitant kinematic and temporospatial changes and ii) the relationship between gait parameters during three gait modifications (toe-in, medial knee thrust, and trunk lean gait).Using visual real-time biofeedback, we collected 10 trials for each modification using individualized target gait parameters based on participants’ baseline mean and standard deviation. Repeated measures ANOVA was performed to determine significant differences between conditions. Mixed effects linear regression models were then used to estimate the linear relationships among variables during each gait modification. All modifications reduced KAM by at least 5%.Modifications resulted in numerous secondary changes between conditions such as increased knee abduction during toe-in gait and increased knee flexion with medial knee thrust. Within gait modifications, relationships between kinematic parameters were similar for toe-in gait and medial knee thrust (i.e. increased toe-in and decreased knee abduction), while increased trunk lean showed no relationship with any other kinematic parameters during trunk lean trials.Two main mechanisms were found as a result of this investigation; the first being a pattern of toeing-in, knee abduction, flexion, and internal hip rotation, while trunk lean modification presented as a separate gait pattern with limited secondary changes. Future studies should consider providing feedback on multiple linked parameters, as it may feel more natural and optimize KAM reductions.

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