View Full Version : Stairs for gait lab

06-08-1997, 11:07 PM
Thanks to all who replied to my query regarding stairs for use in
motion analysis. I received a number of helpful answers- it seems
that this is an area that quite a few people are interested in. Here
is a summary of the replies:

Date sent: Fri, 30 May 1997 11:57:58 -0500
From: Robert Abramczyk
Organization: TIRR Amputee Program
Subject: Re: Stairs for gait lab


The gait lab at the University of Virginia's Kluge Children's Rehab
Center uses stairs mounted to 2 forceplates. The stairs are
lightweight and easy to set up and remove. The following publications
can give you more information on the stair setup and applications:

Besser MP, Kowalk DL, Vaughan CL, "Mounting and calibration of stairs
on piezoelectric force platforms", Gait & Posture, 1:231-235, 1994.

Bowsher KA, Vaughan CL, Wang GJ. "A biomechanical analysis of stair
ascent in normal elderly adults and total hip replacement patients",
Gait & Posture, 2(1): 60, 1994.

Kowalk DL, Duncan JA, Vaughan CL. "Abduction-adduction moments at the
knee during stair ascent and descent", Journal of Biomechanics, 29(3):
383-388, 1996.

Hope this helps.


Date sent: Sun, 01 Jun 97 18:48 EDT
From: Jamal_K_WAKEEM@umail.umd.edu (jw229)
Subject: Re: Stairs for gait lab

You might find a partil answer for your design in the Journal of
Biomechanics, vol 29 (12), Dec. 1996, under tchnical note page 1625.

From: "Calame, Christian"
Subject: AW: Stairs for gait lab
Date sent: Mon, 2 Jun 1997 08:11:55 +0200

Dear Mr. Evans

We know from other customers that our portable force plate 9286 is
particularly suitable for such an application. It is very slim (only
35 mm high) and does not need to be bolted down to a flat surface.
This makes it fairly simple to integrate it into a stair-structure. We
have forwarded your request to one of our customers who is also in the
process of designing stairs and who has done some research prior to
designing. We will also contact you through Kistler UK to provide you
with further details:

Kistler Instruments Ltd. Tel (012 52) 84 35 55
Whiteoaks, The Grove Fax (012 52) 84 44 39
Hartley Wintney,
Hants RG27 8RN, GB

Best Regards
Christian Calame

Date sent: Mon, 2 Jun 1997 09:02:25 -0400 (EDT)
To: EvansSL6@cardiff.ac.uk
From: Bill Warren
Subject: Stairmill

I have used a "stairmill" that had been built for US government
to measure energetics. It did not include force plates. See:

Warren, W.H. (1984) Perceiving affordances: Visual guidance of stair
climbing. J. of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and
Performance, 10, 683-703.

Fitch, J.M, Templer, J., & Corcoran, P. (1974) The dimensions of
stairs. Scientific American, 231(10), 82-90.

-- Bill

Date sent: Sun, 8 Jun 97 8:29:54 EDT
To: EvansSL6
From: Bing Yu
Subject: re: Stairs for gait lab


I may want to have a look at the designe we presented in our paper
published in Journal of Biomechanics:

Yu, B, Growney, E.S., Schultz, F.M., and An, K.N. (1996)
Calibratioin of Measured center of pressure of a new stairway design
for kinetic analysis of stair climbing. Journal of Biomechanics,
29(12): 1625-1628.

Good luck.

Bing Yu, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Division of Physical Therapy
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Date sent: Fri, 6 Jun 1997 09:01:50 +0300 (IDT)
From: "Prof. Joe Mizrahi"
Subject: Re: Stairs for gait lab

Very relevant question.
Would be interested and grateful to know about replies you will
receive. Joe

Thanks once again to all who replied,

Best wishes,


Dr. Sam Evans,
Medical Systems Engineering Research Unit,
UWC School of Engineering,
PO Box 688, The Parade,
Cardiff CF2 3TE, UK.
Tel. (01222) 874533 or (01222) 874000 x5926
Fax. (01222) 874533