Factors contributing to racial differences in gait mechanics differ by sex.
Journal Article (Journal Article)
BackgroundRacial differences in gait mechanics have been recently reported, but we don't know what factors may drive differences in gait and whether these factors are innate or modifiable. The answers to those questions will inform both basic research and clinical interventions and outcomes.
Research questionDo anthropometric, strength, and health status measures explain racial differences in gait between African Americans (AA) and white Americans (WA)?
MethodsVenous blood samples, anthropometric measures, lower extremity strength, and an assessment of health status were collected from 92 participants (18-30 years old) as part of an Institutional Review Board-approved study. 3D motion capture and force plate data were recorded during 7 walking trials at set regular (1.35 m/s) and fast (1.6 m/s) speeds. Racial differences in gait were identified at both speeds. Correlations between anthropometric, strength, and health status independent variables and outcome measures were computed after stratifying data by sex. Stepwise linear regression models evaluated whether the inclusion of anthropometric, strength, and health status independent variables explained racial effects.
ResultsIn males, no racial differences in gait were explained by independent variables. Q-angle and ankle dorsiflexion strength accounted for racial differences in self-selected walking speed in females. Racial differences in ankle plantarflexion angle were explained by ankle plantarflexion strength differences.
SignificanceFactors that explain racial differences in gait in females were both innate and modifiable. These data make clear that it is important to include racially diverse normative gait databases in research studies. These results also identify potential intervention targets aimed at reducing racial health disparities.
- Hill, CN; Reed, W; Schmitt, D; Arent, SM; Sands, LP; Queen, RM
- June 2022
Volume / Issue
- 95 /
Start / End Page
- 277 - 283
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International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)