Gait Analysis: The Ultimate Guide | Intersport Elverys
The Ultimate Guide To Gait Analysis: Why You Need It and Where To Get It
Into running? You’ll probably want to make sure you’re performing to the best of your ability, maximising your performance and avoiding injury.
Whether you’ve heard of it or not, gait analysis is the secret weapon for achieving all three and getting the most out your run – or any athletic sport, for that matter.
So What is Gait Analysis Exactly?
It sounds pretty technical, but essentially gait analysis is a method used to assess the way in which we run or walk to determine if we have any bio-mechanical or structural abnormalities in our lower limbs and feet.
Gait analysis is used to determine the best running shoe for you.
By performing a gait analysis, we can understand a customer’s gait cycle and recommend the correct footwear and accompanying products for their running style.
How is a Gait Analysis Done?
The process of gait analysis is quite quick and straightforward, involving two simple steps.
Step 1: Consultation
An expertly trained member of staff will first take you through an initial consultation, asking you some simple questions about any current problems you may be experiencing when walking or running. These questions aim to get to know you and the experiences if any you’ve had with running or walking.
The best gait analysis questions include:
- What level of a runner are you – beginner, intermediate or advanced?
- What distance do you run per week?
- What is your running goal?
- Do you suffer from any chronic injuries?
- What surface are you running on – road, treadmill, trail?
- Do you currently wear orthotics or insoles?
- What type of the shoe are you currently wearing when running?
Step 2: Analysis
We’ll then examine the arches of your feet to begin the gain analysis.
You will then be asked to step on a treadmill and our trained member of staff will give you some simple instructions to follow. They’ll ask you to start walking on the treadmill, and the speed will be increased slightly depending on your capability. Don’t worry, this is only a short assessment and won’t be strenuous!
A laptop is connected to the treadmill, which analyzes your gait as you’re walking. This allows our staff to make a full assessment of your gait and determine which shoe will work best for you.
How Can Gait Analysis Help You With Running?
Human gait analysis gives you a full overview of how your feet move as you walk or run.
This is important information to have when you’re choosing the correct footwear for running; it’ll help protect your feet and lower limbs, prevent any strain or injury, and make the entire experience of running more comfortable.
Following on from your gait analysis, our team will determine what kind of pronation you have – neutral pronation, supination (sometimes called under pronation) or over pronation.
So what is pronation exactly?
Basically, when your foot strikes the ground, it rolls slightly inwards to absorb the shock. People who roll too far inwards, or not inwards enough, can experience running injuries as the shock absorption capabilities of their feet are reduced.
Overpronation (flat arches):
Overprontation occurs when the foot and ankle roll too far inwards after they’ve landed on the ground. Overpronation is more common in feet that have low or flat arches.
Neutral Pronation (high arches):
Neutral or normal pronation is when the foot lands in just the right way, without rolling inwards too much (or not enough). The foot lands on the outside of the heel and then rolls inwards slightly to absorb shock and support body weight.
Supination (low arches):
Supination, or under pronation, occurs due to the bones in the medial arch of the foot being too high. This means they become packed together and rigid, so they are not able to allow normal pronation to happen. When the foot lands, it doesn’t roll inwards enough to absorb the shock adequately.
Which Running Shoe Should You Choose After Your Gait Analysis?
Again, the type of running shoe we recommend is all based on which pronation your gait analysis determines you to have!
Neutral pronation or supination
If we find you have neutral pronation or supination after your gait analysis, we usually recommend you choose a neutral running shoe. Neutral pronators can wear a wide variety of shoes.
A supinator needs a shoe with a lot of cushioning to avoid strong impacts. A motion control shoe is a good option for supination as they are for those runners who need a maximum amount of cushioning. Neutral running shoes can also work for those with supination.
If the customer overpronates, we typically recommend stability running shoes, which provide extra support to help reduce over pronation.
There are a number of different options of neutral and stability running shoes at every price point each with varying levels of cushioning and stability.
Brand’s terminologies differ, but your needs as a runner come first, so our recommendations will always be made based on profiling, analysis results and your personal preference. We will provide you with plenty of options to choose from depending on your needs and budget.
Top tips for choosing the best running shoe after your gait analysis:
- Always test out a shoe before purchasing, you can take them for a spin on our gait analysis treadmill to make sure they’re right for you.
- Cost doesn’t equal quality. Always choose the best option for you regardless of the price.
- Size is crucial. You want to make sure the runner feels snug and supportive, but not overly tight on any part of your foot.
Where Can I Get a Gait Analysis Done?
If you’re looking to get a human gait analysis in Dublin, we have fully trained members of staff who are more than happy to help in any of the following stores:
- Suffolk Street
If you’re not in Dublin, you can get gait analysis done in any of the following stores:
- Athlone – Golden Island
- Galway – Retail Park
- Kilkenny – Parliament Street
- Limerick – Crescent Shopping Centre
- Sligo – Johnston Court
- Cork – Oliver Plunkett Street
How Much Does Gait Analysis Cost?
At Elverys, gait analysis is completely free. You can save hundreds by simply calling in to one of these stores and request it with one of our running experts; they’ll have your analysis carried out in no time and at no charge!
If you can’t get into a store to have your gait analysis done, you can still shop online for your perfect running shoes – our guide to choosing the right footwear has you covered! You can then shop online from a wide range of running shoes and find the perfect pair for you.
Shop all things running at Intersport Elverys HERE.