View Full Version : Summary of Running Activity Volume (Fore/Aft and Lateral)

Dewitt, John K. (jsc-sk) (wls)
04-11-2002, 12:15 AM
> The following are summaries of the responses I received concerning the
> activity volume of a subject on a treadmill. For clarification, when
> developing specs for equipment, we ensure that a 5th percentile female to
> a 95th percentile male can use the equipment.
> Original Posting:
> Hello Colleagues,
> Here at the Space Physiology Laboratory we are determining the
> specifications for a 2nd generation treadmill to be placed on the
> International Space Station. One of the design criterion concerns the
> required clearance space of the treadmill to allow the astronauts to run
> and
> walk unencumbered. We have completed some literature searches, but have
> not
> found any papers or data regarding the motion of the body center of mass
> and
> the required clearance for all body segments in the lateral and
> forward/backward directions. The astronauts will use the treadmill for
> gait
> exercise at speeds ranging from 1.5 - 15 mph. We are looking for any
> suggestions to answer the following questions:
> 1) What is the maximum distance from the toe of the lead foot at heel
> strike
> to the ankle of the back foot at maximum foot back (not necessarily at the
> time of heel strike)? How much fore/aft displacement of the body COM
> occurs
> during normal treadmill running?
> 2) Concerning elbow abduction (horizontal and frontal), what is the
> distance
> from elbow to elbow when each is at maximal horizontal abduction? How much
> lateral displacement of the body COM occurs during treadmill running?
> 3) How is gait altered as obstructions are placed lateral to the subject?
> Is
> the perception of a nearby object, which theoretically is out of the range
> of possible contact with the subject, enough to cause an alteration in
> locomotion? If so, what is a reasonable "cushion" to account for this
> effect?
> Any answers or suggestions for any of these issues would be appreciated. I
> will summarize and post the responses.
> Thanks,
> --------------------------------------------------------------------------
> --------------------------------------------------------------------------
> ------
> What I have is as follows (from my Ph.D. dissertation [Hinrichs, 1982,
> Upper extremity in running, Penn State]:
> 1. Body CM range of motion
> a. In the AP direction the mean cyclic variation was less than 1 cm.
> However, my runners tended to gain on the treadmill during the single
> cycle I digitized, and this gain was a full 2 cm on the average. I suppose
> a restricted area would limit this "forward drift".
> b. In the ML direction, the side-to-side range of motion of the body CM
> was also about 1 cm with no systematic drift as noted in the AP direction.
> 2. Maximum side-to-side "width" from one elbow to the other: I don't have
> these data. I'd have to go back to the original xyz data and I don't have
> these handy; they are in the form of binary files that I have not had any
> luck viewing. However, I do have shoulder abduction angles and it appears
> that the mean maximum abduction angle is about 30 degrees (occurring
> during the airborne phase during the forward swing of that arm). At this
> time the contralateral arm is swinging back and abducted approximately 10
> degrees. During the mid stance phase, each arm is abducted about 20
> degrees. If you take shoulder width and arm length to the elbow, you could
> calculate the distances you want from these data.
> 3. I have no data on the fore-aft distance needed from one foot to the
> other. Once again, if I could read my raw xyz files, I could get those
> data for you.
> --------------------------------------------------------------------------
> --------------------------------------------------------------------------
> -------------
> I have the armswing data you are asking for either in my dissertation or
> in the subsequent IJSB/JAB publications. By the way, the correct
> anatomical description is shoulder abduction (not elbow abduction). You
> also used the term horizontal abduction. This means something completely
> different than abduction. Horizontal abduction of the shoulder occurs when
> moving the arm in a horizontal plane from a point directly forward to a
> point out to one's side. This doesn't occur much in running. The forward
> and backward swings do occur with the elbows out to the side (i.e.,
> shoulder abducted) somewhat. I considered this to be flexion/extension
> movements of the shoulder (determined by projected angles). I also
> determined the shoulder abduction angles via projected angles. I can mail
> you the appropriate pages from my dissertation if you would like. Let me
> know.
> --------------------------------------------------------------------------
> --------------------------------------------------------------------------
> ----------------
> I presented you questions on running on a limited space treadmill to my
> Applied Biomechanics students this morning and they were intrigued. They
> though of several things that would impact your question. They realized
> that space requirements will vary with the size of the astronaut. They
> also wondered if the low gravity environment will change running
> technique. We did some quick experimentation and found that most of the
> students could run comfortably in a 3'x5' box, but there were some
> question, primarily the psychological question you proposed. The main
> thing my students want to ask is whether NASA would be interested in
> funding a study on running compactness and enclosed spaces. They are
> quite curious. If you see any funding potential, let me know - I have
> students that would love to do such a study. Thanks.
> --------------------------------------------------------------------------
> --------------------------------------------------------------------------
> ------------------
> My suggestion is that you go ahead and take the measurements of the
> astronauts in the appropriate attire, with a simple movement analysis
> system
> such as the one we can provide you with. The system is called KineView and
> it is based on 2D videography. All you would nee is one portable
> videocamera
> for the data collection. You can then analyze the video data in your
> computer by inserting tools which will enable you to take the measurements
> you need, such as step lengths, and distance of elbow to elbow. Of course
> this will depend of the size of each astronaut, therefore, I think it is
> important that you do not base your solution on previously researched
> data,
> but apply it directly to your subjects. You could, knowing the persons
> height and weight, calculate the location of the COM, and then with the
> system above described, insert a marker on that location to analyze the
> displacement.
> Feel free to contact me or to visit our website (www.kine.is) for further
> information.
> --------------------------------------------------------------------------
> --------------------------------------------------------------------------
> -----------------
> Hello John.
> Your problem is an interesting one. It seems that your approach is
> reasonable as well. You are, of course, trying to determine the optimal
> specifications for the treadmill.
> I think, however, you must not spend too much time re-inventing the wheel.
> I
> bet that you could get as good an answer as any you will receive from
> weeks
> of literature searches and measurements if you simply go down to your
> local
> fitness equipment store and look around. You will probably find many
> treadmills of varying costs, sizes and shapes. I recommend you find the
> biggest, clumsiest astronaut you can find, take him to the fitness store
> with you, and have him run on all of the different treadmills. Ask him
> what
> he things about each, and pick the smallest one that he feels comfortable
> on. Purchase this treadmill and take it back to the lab with you.
> The above procedure will probably take just a few hours (depending upon
> the
> availability of the big, clumsy, perhaps slightly claustrophobic
> astronaut.
> A cosmonaut would suffice I am sure). It will take less time, and will
> cost
> less than extensive scientific study. With the time and money that you
> save,
> you can buy the treamill that you chose, and put it a box made of plywood
> in
> your lab. Get the same big clumsy astronaut (or cosmonaut, or reasonable
> facsimile) to run on the treadmill in the box. Move the walls of the box
> in,
> both in front and behind, and on either side of the clumsy astronaut. When
> he starts to freak out, stop moving the walls in.
> The method I suggest above is not very scientific. But I'll bet you it
> will
> give you the results you need. I expect that all of the rigorous
> literature
> searches and anthropometrics databases in the world will not provide the
> benefit of such a real-life, trial and error approach.
> I don't mean to sound like a smart-ass. I genuinely think that this
> approach
> will serve you well.
> --------------------------------------------------------------------------
> --------------------------------------------------------------------------
> -----------------
> I recently received an e-mail forward addressing "Running Activity
> Volume." Currently, at the University of Minnesota Duluth, the
> biomechanics lab is investigating various kinematic parameters of
> regularly weighted and unweighted running (using unweighting
> harnesses). You may be interested in some of the kinematic parameters
> that we will be analyzing. Our research will provide data concerning
> stride length; stride time; angular displacement of ankle, knee, and
> hip angles; torso rotation; torso angle relative to the ground; and
> vertical movement of the center of mass during treadmill running. Our
> subject pool consists of 10 male college cross country runners running
> on a treadmill at 8.6 mph. When doing some preliminary research, I
> also had a difficult time finding literature on the subject. If any of
> this information sounds useful to you, I would be glad to help. We
> have just finished collecting our data and final analysis of the
> kinematic parameters that I have mentioned above should be completed
> with the next two weeks. If you desire additional kinematic
> information than our study will provide, please let me know what those
> are; it is simply a matter of specifying what data we would like the
> computer to produce. Hope this helps.
> --------------------------------------------------------------------------
> --------------------------------------------------------------------------
> -----------------------
> John DeWitt, M.S.
> Biomechanist - Exercise Physiology Laboratory
> Space Physiology & Countermeasures
> Johnson Space Center
> Houston, TX 77058
> 281-483-8939 / 821-483-4181 (fax)

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