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Sample records for bipedal walking mechanism

  1. Center of mass mechanics of chimpanzee bipedal walking.

    PubMed

    Demes, Brigitte; Thompson, Nathan E; O'Neill, Matthew C; Umberger, Brian R

    2015-03-01

    Center of mass (CoM) oscillations were documented for 81 bipedal walking strides of three chimpanzees. Full-stride ground reaction forces were recorded as well as kinematic data to synchronize force to gait events and to determine speed. Despite being a bent-hip, bent-knee (BHBK) gait, chimpanzee walking uses pendulum-like motion with vertical oscillations of the CoM that are similar in pattern and relative magnitude to those of humans. Maximum height is achieved during single support and minimum height during double support. The mediolateral oscillations of the CoM are more pronounced relative to stature than in human walking when compared at the same Froude speed. Despite the pendular nature of chimpanzee bipedalism, energy recoveries from exchanges of kinetic and potential energies are low on average and highly variable. This variability is probably related to the poor phasic coordination of energy fluctuations in these facultatively bipedal animals. The work on the CoM per unit mass and distance (mechanical cost of transport) is higher than that in humans, but lower than that in bipedally walking monkeys and gibbons. The pronounced side sway is not passive, but constitutes 10% of the total work of lifting and accelerating the CoM. CoM oscillations of bipedally walking chimpanzees are distinctly different from those of BHBK gait of humans with a flat trajectory, but this is often described as "chimpanzee-like" walking. Human BHBK gait is a poor model for chimpanzee bipedal walking and offers limited insights for reconstructing early hominin gait evolution. PMID:25407636

  2. The basic mechanics of bipedal walking lead to asymmetric behavior.

    PubMed

    Gregg, Robert D; Degani, Amir; Dhaher, Yasin; Lynch, Kevin M

    2011-01-01

    This paper computationally investigates whether gait asymmetries can be attributed in part to basic bipedal mechanics independent of motor control. Using a symmetrical rigid-body model known as the compass-gait biped, we show that changes in environmental or physiological parameters can facilitate asymmetry in gait kinetics at fast walking speeds. In the environmental case, the asymmetric family of high-speed gaits is in fact more stable than the symmetric family of low-speed gaits. These simulations suggest that lower extremity mechanics might play a direct role in functional and pathological asymmetries reported in human walking, where velocity may be a common variable in the emergence and growth of asymmetry. PMID:22275657

  3. On the Mechanics of Functional Asymmetry in Bipedal Walking

    PubMed Central

    Dhaher, Yasin Y.; Degani, Amir; Lynch, Kevin M.

    2014-01-01

    This paper uses two symmetrical models, the passive compass-gait biped and a five-link 3D biped, to computationally investigate the cause and function of gait asymmetry. We show that for a range of slope angles during passive 2D walking and mass distributions during controlled 3D walking, these models have asymmetric walking patterns between the left and right legs due to the phenomenon of spontaneous symmetry-breaking. In both cases a stable asymmetric family of gaits emerges from a symmetric family of gaits as the total energy increases (e.g., fast speeds). The ground reaction forces of each leg reflect different roles, roughly corresponding to support, propulsion, and motion control as proposed by the hypothesis of functional asymmetry in able-bodied human walking. These results suggest that body mechanics, independent of neurophysiological mechanisms such as leg dominance, may contribute to able-bodied gait asymmetry. PMID:22328168

  4. Bipedal spring-damper-mass model reproduces external mechanical power of human walking.

    PubMed

    Etenzi, Ettore; Monaco, Vito

    2015-08-01

    Previous authors have long investigated the behavior of different models of passive walkers with stiff or compliant limbs. We investigated a model of bipedal mechanism whose limba are provided with damping and elastic elements. This model is designed for walking along an inclined plane, in order to make up the energy lost due to the damping element with that gained thanks to the lowering the CoM. The proposed model is hence able to steadily walk. In particular we investigated the stability of this model by using the Poincaré return map for different dynamical configurations. Then we compared the estimated external mechanical power with experimental data from literature in order to validate the model. Results show that the model is able to reproduce the main features of the time course of the external mechanical power during the gait cycle. Accordingly, dissipative elements coupled with limbs' compliant behavior represent a suitable paradigm, to mimic human locomotion. PMID:26736788

  5. Theoretical analysis of the state of balance in bipedal walking.

    PubMed

    Firmani, Flavio; Park, Edward J

    2013-04-01

    This paper presents a theoretical analysis based on classic mechanical principles of balance of forces in bipedal walking. Theories on the state of balance have been proposed in the area of humanoid robotics and although the laws of classical mechanics are equivalent to both humans and humanoid robots, the resulting motion obtained with these theories is unnatural when compared to normal human gait. Humanoid robots are commonly controlled using the zero moment point (ZMP) with the condition that the ZMP cannot exit the foot-support area. This condition is derived from a physical model in which the biped must always walk under dynamically balanced conditions, making the centre of pressure (CoP) and the ZMP always coincident. On the contrary, humans follow a different strategy characterized by a 'controlled fall' at the end of the swing phase. In this paper, we present a thorough theoretical analysis of the state of balance and show that the ZMP can exit the support area, and its location is representative of the imbalance state characterized by the separation between the ZMP and the CoP. Since humans exhibit this behavior, we also present proof-of-concept results of a single subject walking on an instrumented treadmill at different speeds (from slow 0.7 m/s to fast 2.0 m/s walking with increments of 0.1 m/s) with the motion recorded using an optical motion tracking system. In order to evaluate the experimental results of this model, the coefficient of determination (R2) is used to correlate the measured ground reaction forces and the resultant of inertial and gravitational forces (anteroposterior R² = 0.93, mediolateral R² = 0.89, and vertical R² = 0.86) indicating that there is a high correlation between the measurements. The results suggest that the subject exhibits a complete dynamically balanced gait during slow speeds while experiencing a controlled fall (end of swing phase) with faster speeds. This is quantified with the root-mean-square deviation (RMSD

  6. Elastic coupling of limb joints enables faster bipedal walking

    PubMed Central

    Dean, J.C.; Kuo, A.D.

    2008-01-01

    The passive dynamics of bipedal limbs alone are sufficient to produce a walking motion, without need for control. Humans augment these dynamics with muscles, actively coordinated to produce stable and economical walking. Present robots using passive dynamics walk much slower, perhaps because they lack elastic muscles that couple the joints. Elastic properties are well known to enhance running gaits, but their effect on walking has yet to be explored. Here we use a computational model of dynamic walking to show that elastic joint coupling can help to coordinate faster walking. In walking powered by trailing leg push-off, the model's speed is normally limited by a swing leg that moves too slowly to avoid stumbling. A uni-articular spring about the knee allows faster but uneconomical walking. A combination of uni-articular hip and knee springs can speed the legs for improved speed and economy, but not without the swing foot scuffing the ground. Bi-articular springs coupling the hips and knees can yield high economy and good ground clearance similar to humans. An important parameter is the knee-to-hip moment arm that greatly affects the existence and stability of gaits, and when selected appropriately can allow for a wide range of speeds. Elastic joint coupling may contribute to the economy and stability of human gait. PMID:18957360

  7. Exploring Toe Walking in a Bipedal Robot

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, James Andrew; Seyfarth, Andre

    The design and development of locomotory subsystems such as legs is a key issue in the broader topic of autonomous mobile systems. Simplification of substructures, sensing, actuation and control can aid to better understand the dynamics of legged locomotion and will make the implementation of legs in engineered systems more effective. This paper examines recent results in the development of toe walking on the JenaWalker II robot. The robot is shown, while supported on a treadmill, to be capable of accelerating from 0 to over 0.6 m/s without adjustment of control parameters such as hip actuator sweep frequency or amplitude. The resulting stable motion is due to the adaptability of the passive structures incorporated into the legs. The roles of the individual muscletendon groups are examined and a potential configuration for future heel-toe trials is suggested.

  8. Collision-based mechanics of bipedal hopping.

    PubMed

    Gutmann, Anne K; Lee, David V; McGowan, Craig P

    2013-08-23

    The muscle work required to sustain steady-speed locomotion depends largely upon the mechanical energy needed to redirect the centre of mass and the degree to which this energy can be stored and returned elastically. Previous studies have found that large bipedal hoppers can elastically store and return a large fraction of the energy required to hop, whereas small bipedal hoppers can only elastically store and return a relatively small fraction. Here, we consider the extent to which large and small bipedal hoppers (tammar wallabies, approx. 7 kg, and desert kangaroo rats, approx. 0.1 kg) reduce the mechanical energy needed to redirect the centre of mass by reducing collisions. We hypothesize that kangaroo rats will reduce collisions to a greater extent than wallabies since kangaroo rats cannot elastically store and return as high a fraction of the mechanical energy of hopping as wallabies. We find that kangaroo rats use a significantly smaller collision angle than wallabies by employing ground reaction force vectors that are more vertical and center of mass velocity vectors that are more horizontal and thereby reduce their mechanical cost of transport. A collision-based approach paired with tendon morphometry may reveal this effect more generally among bipedal runners and quadrupedal trotters. PMID:23843217

  9. Surprising trunk rotational capabilities in chimpanzees and implications for bipedal walking proficiency in early hominins.

    PubMed

    Thompson, Nathan E; Demes, Brigitte; O'Neill, Matthew C; Holowka, Nicholas B; Larson, Susan G

    2015-01-01

    Human walking entails coordinated out-of-phase axial rotations of the thorax and pelvis. A long-held assumption is that this ability relies on adaptations for trunk flexibility present in humans, but not in chimpanzees, other great apes, or australopithecines. Here we use three-dimensional kinematic analyses to show that, contrary to current thinking, chimpanzees walking bipedally rotate their lumbar and thoracic regions in a manner similar to humans. This occurs despite differences in the magnitude of trunk motion, and despite morphological differences in truncal 'rigidity' between species. These results suggest that, like humans and chimpanzees, early hominins walked with upper body rotations that countered pelvic rotation. We demonstrate that even if early hominins walked with pelvic rotations 50% larger than humans, they may have accrued the energetic and mechanical benefits of out-of-phase thoracic rotations. This would have allowed early hominins to reduce work and locomotor cost, improving walking efficiency early in hominin evolution. PMID:26441046

  10. The role of series ankle elasticity in bipedal walking.

    PubMed

    Zelik, Karl E; Huang, Tzu-Wei P; Adamczyk, Peter G; Kuo, Arthur D

    2014-04-01

    The elastic stretch-shortening cycle of the Achilles tendon during walking can reduce the active work demands on the plantarflexor muscles in series. However, this does not explain why or when this ankle work, whether by muscle or tendon, needs to be performed during gait. We therefore employ a simple bipedal walking model to investigate how ankle work and series elasticity impact economical locomotion. Our model shows that ankle elasticity can use passive dynamics to aid push-off late in single support, redirecting the body's center-of-mass (COM) motion upward. An appropriately timed, elastic push-off helps to reduce dissipative collision losses at contralateral heelstrike, and therefore the positive work needed to offset those losses and power steady walking. Thus, the model demonstrates how elastic ankle work can reduce the total energetic demands of walking, including work required from more proximal knee and hip muscles. We found that the key requirement for using ankle elasticity to achieve economical gait is the proper ratio of ankle stiffness to foot length. Optimal combination of these parameters ensures proper timing of elastic energy release prior to contralateral heelstrike, and sufficient energy storage to redirect the COM velocity. In fact, there exist parameter combinations that theoretically yield collision-free walking, thus requiring zero active work, albeit with relatively high ankle torques. Ankle elasticity also allows the hip to power economical walking by contributing indirectly to push-off. Whether walking is powered by the ankle or hip, ankle elasticity may aid walking economy by reducing collision losses. PMID:24365635

  11. The role of series ankle elasticity in bipedal walking

    PubMed Central

    Zelik, Karl E.; Huang, Tzu-Wei P.; Adamczyk, Peter G.; Kuo, Arthur D.

    2014-01-01

    The elastic stretch-shortening cycle of the Achilles tendon during walking can reduce the active work demands on the plantarflexor muscles in series. However, this does not explain why or when this ankle work, whether by muscle or tendon, needs to be performed during gait. We therefore employ a simple bipedal walking model to investigate how ankle work and series elasticity impact economical locomotion. Our model shows that ankle elasticity can use passive dynamics to aid push-off late in single support, redirecting the body's center-of-mass (COM) motion upward. An appropriately timed, elastic push-off helps to reduce dissipative collision losses at contralateral heelstrike, and therefore the positive work needed to offset those losses and power steady walking. Thus, the model demonstrates how elastic ankle work can reduce the total energetic demands of walking, including work required from more proximal knee and hip muscles. We found that the key requirement for using ankle elasticity to achieve economical gait is the proper ratio of ankle stiffness to foot length. Optimal combination of these parameters ensures proper timing of elastic energy release prior to contralateral heelstrike, and sufficient energy storage to redirect the COM velocity. In fact, there exist parameter combinations that theoretically yield collision-free walking, thus requiring zero active work, albeit with relatively high ankle torques. Ankle elasticity also allows the hip to power economical walking by contributing indirectly to push-off. Whether walking is powered by the ankle or hip, ankle elasticity may aid walking economy by reducing collision losses. PMID:24365635

  12. Three-dimensional kinematics of the pelvis and hind limbs in chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) and human bipedal walking.

    PubMed

    O'Neill, Matthew C; Lee, Leng-Feng; Demes, Brigitte; Thompson, Nathan E; Larson, Susan G; Stern, Jack T; Umberger, Brian R

    2015-09-01

    The common chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) is a facultative biped and our closest living relative. As such, the musculoskeletal anatomies of their pelvis and hind limbs have long provided a comparative context for studies of human and fossil hominin locomotion. Yet, how the chimpanzee pelvis and hind limb actually move during bipedal walking is still not well defined. Here, we describe the three-dimensional (3-D) kinematics of the pelvis, hip, knee and ankle during bipedal walking and compare those values to humans walking at the same dimensionless and dimensional velocities. The stride-to-stride and intraspecific variations in 3-D kinematics were calculated using the adjusted coefficient of multiple correlation. Our results indicate that humans walk with a more stable pelvis than chimpanzees, especially in tilt and rotation. Both species exhibit similar magnitudes of pelvis list, but with segment motion that is opposite in phasing. In the hind limb, chimpanzees walk with a more flexed and abducted limb posture, and substantially exceed humans in the magnitude of hip rotation during a stride. The average stride-to-stride variation in joint and segment motion was greater in chimpanzees than humans, while the intraspecific variation was similar on average. These results demonstrate substantial differences between human and chimpanzee bipedal walking, in both the sagittal and non-sagittal planes. These new 3-D kinematic data are fundamental to a comprehensive understanding of the mechanics, energetics and control of chimpanzee bipedalism. PMID:26194031

  13. Surprising trunk rotational capabilities in chimpanzees and implications for bipedal walking proficiency in early hominins

    PubMed Central

    Thompson, Nathan E.; Demes, Brigitte; O'Neill, Matthew C.; Holowka, Nicholas B.; Larson, Susan G.

    2015-01-01

    Human walking entails coordinated out-of-phase axial rotations of the thorax and pelvis. A long-held assumption is that this ability relies on adaptations for trunk flexibility present in humans, but not in chimpanzees, other great apes, or australopithecines. Here we use three-dimensional kinematic analyses to show that, contrary to current thinking, chimpanzees walking bipedally rotate their lumbar and thoracic regions in a manner similar to humans. This occurs despite differences in the magnitude of trunk motion, and despite morphological differences in truncal ‘rigidity' between species. These results suggest that, like humans and chimpanzees, early hominins walked with upper body rotations that countered pelvic rotation. We demonstrate that even if early hominins walked with pelvic rotations 50% larger than humans, they may have accrued the energetic and mechanical benefits of out-of-phase thoracic rotations. This would have allowed early hominins to reduce work and locomotor cost, improving walking efficiency early in hominin evolution. PMID:26441046

  14. Effects of electrical noise to a knee joint on quiet bipedal stance and treadmill walking.

    PubMed

    Kimura, T; Taki, C; Shiozawa, N; Kouzaki, M

    2013-01-01

    The present study assessed whether an unperceivable, noise-like electrical stimulation of a knee joint enhances the stability of quiet bipedal stance and treadmill walking in young subjects. The results showed that the slow postural sway measures in quiet bipedal stance were significantly reduced by the electrical noise (P<0.05). In the treadmill walking, low frequency component (below 1 Hz) of mediolateral acceleration, measured at the third lumbar vertebra, significantly decreased with the electrical noise (P<0.05), while there were no changes in the anteroposterior and vertical directions. These results indicate that the electrical noise to a knee joint can be applied to enhance postural control in quiet bipedal stance and treadmill walking. PMID:24110917

  15. Bipedal and quadrupedal locomotion in chimpanzees.

    PubMed

    Pontzer, Herman; Raichlen, David A; Rodman, Peter S

    2014-01-01

    Chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) habitually walk both bipedally and quadrupedally, and have been a common point of reference for understanding the evolution of bipedal locomotion in early ape-like hominins. Here we compare the kinematics, kinetics, and energetics of bipedal and quadrupedal walking and running in a sample of five captive chimpanzees. Kinematics were recorded using sagittal-plane digital high-speed video of treadmill trials. Kinetics were recorded via a forceplate. Metabolic energy cost was measured via steady-state oxygen consumption during treadmill trials. Consistent with previous work on chimpanzees and other hominoids, we found that the spatiotemporal characteristics, joint angles, ground reaction forces, and metabolic cost of bipedal and quadrupedal locomotion are similar in chimpanzees. Notable differences include hip and trunk angles, which reflected a more orthograde trunk posture during bipedalism, and mediolateral ground reaction forces, which were larger during bipedal walking. Stride frequencies were also higher (and step lengths shorter) during bipedal trials. Bipedal and quadrupedal walking among chimpanzees was similar to that reported for bonobos, gibbons, and other primates. The similarity in cost between bipedal and quadrupedal trials suggests that the adoption of bipedal walking would have had no effect on walking costs for early ape-like hominins. However, habitual bipedalism may have favored modifications of the hip to allow a more orthograde posture, and of the hind limb abductor mechanisms to efficiently exert mediolateral ground forces. PMID:24315239

  16. Extracting Kinematic Parameters for Monkey Bipedal Walking from Cortical Neuronal Ensemble Activity

    PubMed Central

    Fitzsimmons, Nathan A.; Lebedev, Mikhail A.; Peikon, Ian D.; Nicolelis, Miguel A. L.

    2009-01-01

    The ability to walk may be critically impacted as the result of neurological injury or disease. While recent advances in brain–machine interfaces (BMIs) have demonstrated the feasibility of upper-limb neuroprostheses, BMIs have not been evaluated as a means to restore walking. Here, we demonstrate that chronic recordings from ensembles of cortical neurons can be used to predict the kinematics of bipedal walking in rhesus macaques – both offline and in real time. Linear decoders extracted 3D coordinates of leg joints and leg muscle electromyograms from the activity of hundreds of cortical neurons. As more complex patterns of walking were produced by varying the gait speed and direction, larger neuronal populations were needed to accurately extract walking patterns. Extraction was further improved using a switching decoder which designated a submodel for each walking paradigm. We propose that BMIs may one day allow severely paralyzed patients to walk again. PMID:19404411

  17. Simulation Studies of Bipedal Walking on the Moon and Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamada, Shin; Ohshima, Hiroshi; Yamaguchi, Tomofumi; Narukawa, Terumasa; Takahashi, Masaki; Hase, Kimitaka; Liu, Meigen; Mukai, Chiaki

    In order to walk upright on the Moon or Mars without falling, a specific walking strategy to account for altered gravitational conditions must be verified. We have therefore been studying changes in the kinematics of walking at different gravitational loads using a body weight suspension system. Our simulation consisted of three gravitational conditions: 1 g (Earth); 1/3 g (Mars); and 1/6 g (the Moon). Surface EMG recordings were taken from the leg muscles of subjects walking on a treadmill. Cadence, stance phase duration, and step length were calculated from the walking velocity and steps. Subsequent experiments revealed that muscle activity and the duration of the double support phase decreased as simulated gravity was reduced. These changes are apparently caused not only by the direct effects of unloading but also by kinematic adaptations to the same. It can be said that humans walk slowly with a shortened stride and elongated stance phase in order to adjust to low gravitational conditions. One major limitation of our study that may have affected walking stability was the fact that the suspension system was fixed to an immovable frame. We have begun further studies using a newer movable body weight suspension system to achieve more realistic simulations.

  18. Mechanisms for the acquisition of habitual bipedality: are there biomechanical reasons for the acquisition of upright bipedal posture?

    PubMed

    Preuschoft, Holger

    2004-05-01

    Morphology and biomechanics are linked by causal morphogenesis ('Wolff's law') and the interplay of mutations and selection (Darwin's 'survival of the fittest'). Thus shape-based selective pressures can be determined. In both cases we need to know which biomechanical factors lead to skeletal adaptation, and which ones exert selective pressures on body shape. Each bone must be able to sustain the greatest regularly occurring loads. Smaller loads are unlikely to lead to adaptation of morphology. The highest loads occur primarily in posture and locomotion, simply because of the effect of body weight (or its multiple). In the skull, however, it is biting and chewing that result in the greatest loads. Body shape adapted for an arboreal lifestyle also smooths the way towards bipedality. Hindlimb dominance, length of the limbs in relation to the axial skeleton, grasping hands and feet, mass distribution (especially of the limb segments), thoracic shape, rib curvatures, and the position of the centre of gravity are the adaptations to arboreality that also pre-adapt for bipedality. Five divergent locomotor/morphological types have evolved from this base: arm-swinging in gibbons, forelimb-dominated slow climbing in orangutans, quadrupedalism/climbing in the African apes, an unknown mix of climbing and bipedal walking in australopithecines, and the remarkably endurant bipedal walking of humans. All other apes are also facultative bipeds, but it is the biomechanical characteristics of bipedalism in orangutans, the most arboreal great ape, which is closest to that in humans. If not evolutionary accident, what selective factor can explain why two forms adopted bipedality? Most authors tend to connect bipedal locomotion with some aspect of progressively increasing distance between trees because of climatic changes. More precise factors, in accordance with biomechanical requirements, include stone-throwing, thermoregulation or wading in shallow water. Once bipedality has been

  19. Adding adaptable toe stiffness affects energetic efficiency and dynamic behaviors of bipedal walking.

    PubMed

    Sun, Shiqi; Huang, Yan; Wang, Qining

    2016-01-01

    In human walking, toes play an important role in supporting the body and controlling the forward motion. These functions are achieved by muscles and tendons around toe joints. To further understand the importance of toe and how toe muscle functions affect the locomotion, we employ a simple bipedal walking model with compliant joints. The ankle joints and toe joints are modeled as torsional springs and the actuation patterns are similar to that of normal human walking. Experimental results show that adding adaptable compliant toe joints could benefit the stability and energy efficiency. By generating plantar flexion moment after heel-off, the toes contribute to stabilize the body and control the forward motion. In addition, multi-joint foot structure could improve the energy efficiency by reducing the energy consumption of ankle joints. A proper toe actuation pattern could result in a proper toe dorsiflexion and reduce the maximal ankle plantar flexion, leading to a smoother and more efficient locomotion. PMID:26519906

  20. The lower limb and mechanics of walking in Australopithecus sediba.

    PubMed

    DeSilva, Jeremy M; Holt, Kenneth G; Churchill, Steven E; Carlson, Kristian J; Walker, Christopher S; Zipfel, Bernhard; Berger, Lee R

    2013-04-12

    The discovery of a relatively complete Australopithecus sediba adult female skeleton permits a detailed locomotor analysis in which joint systems can be integrated to form a comprehensive picture of gait kinematics in this late australopith. Here we describe the lower limb anatomy of Au. sediba and hypothesize that this species walked with a fully extended leg and with an inverted foot during the swing phase of bipedal walking. Initial contact of the lateral foot with the ground resulted in a large pronatory torque around the joints of the foot that caused extreme medial weight transfer (hyperpronation) into the toe-off phase of the gait cycle (late pronation). These bipedal mechanics are different from those often reconstructed for other australopiths and suggest that there may have been several forms of bipedalism during the Plio-Pleistocene. PMID:23580534

  1. Sensor Data Fusion for Body State Estimation in a Bipedal Robot and Its Feedback Control Application for Stable Walking

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Ching-Pei; Chen, Jing-Yi; Huang, Chun-Kai; Lu, Jau-Ching; Lin, Pei-Chun

    2015-01-01

    We report on a sensor data fusion algorithm via an extended Kalman filter for estimating the spatial motion of a bipedal robot. Through fusing the sensory information from joint encoders, a 6-axis inertial measurement unit and a 2-axis inclinometer, the robot’s body state at a specific fixed position can be yielded. This position is also equal to the CoM when the robot is in the standing posture suggested by the detailed CAD model of the robot. In addition, this body state is further utilized to provide sensory information for feedback control on a bipedal robot with walking gait. The overall control strategy includes the proposed body state estimator as well as the damping controller, which regulates the body position state of the robot in real-time based on instant and historical position tracking errors. Moreover, a posture corrector for reducing unwanted torque during motion is addressed. The body state estimator and the feedback control structure are implemented in a child-size bipedal robot and the performance is experimentally evaluated. PMID:25734644

  2. Sensor data fusion for body state estimation in a bipedal robot and its feedback control application for stable walking.

    PubMed

    Chen, Ching-Pei; Chen, Jing-Yi; Huang, Chun-Kai; Lu, Jau-Ching; Lin, Pei-Chun

    2015-01-01

    We report on a sensor data fusion algorithm via an extended Kalman filter for estimating the spatial motion of a bipedal robot. Through fusing the sensory information from joint encoders, a 6-axis inertial measurement unit and a 2-axis inclinometer, the robot's body state at a specific fixed position can be yielded. This position is also equal to the CoM when the robot is in the standing posture suggested by the detailed CAD model of the robot. In addition, this body state is further utilized to provide sensory information for feedback control on a bipedal robot with walking gait. The overall control strategy includes the proposed body state estimator as well as the damping controller, which regulates the body position state of the robot in real-time based on instant and historical position tracking errors. Moreover, a posture corrector for reducing unwanted torque during motion is addressed. The body state estimator and the feedback control structure are implemented in a child-size bipedal robot and the performance is experimentally evaluated. PMID:25734644

  3. Analysis of joint force and torque for the human and non-human ape foot during bipedal walking with implications for the evolution of the foot.

    PubMed

    Wang, Weijie; Abboud, Rami J; Günther, Michael M; Crompton, Robin H

    2014-08-01

    The feet of apes have a different morphology from those of humans. Until now, it has merely been assumed that the morphology seen in humans must be adaptive for habitual bipedal walking, as the habitual use of bipedal walking is generally regarded as one of the most clear-cut differences between humans and apes. This study asks simply whether human skeletal proportions do actually enhance foot performance during human-like bipedalism, by examining the influence of foot proportions on force, torque and work in the foot joints during simulated bipedal walking. Skeletons of the common chimpanzee, orangutan, gorilla and human were represented by multi-rigid-body models, where the components of the foot make external contact via finite element surfaces. The models were driven by identical joint motion functions collected from experiments on human walking. Simulated contact forces between the ground and the foot were found to be reasonably comparable with measurements made during human walking using pressure- and force-platforms. Joint force, torque and work in the foot were then predicted. Within the limitations of our model, the results show that during simulated human-like bipedal walking, (1) the human and non-human ape (NHA) feet carry similar joint forces, although the distributions of the forces differ; (2) the NHA foot incurs larger joint torques than does the human foot, although the human foot has higher values in the first tarso-metatarsal and metatarso-phalangeal joints, whereas the NHA foot incurs higher values in the lateral digits; and (3) total work in the metatarso-phalangeal joints is lower in the human foot than in the NHA foot. The results indicate that human foot proportions are indeed well suited to performance in normal human walking. PMID:24925580

  4. Analysis of joint force and torque for the human and non-human ape foot during bipedal walking with implications for the evolution of the foot

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Weijie; Abboud, Rami J; Günther, Michael M; Crompton, Robin H

    2014-01-01

    The feet of apes have a different morphology from those of humans. Until now, it has merely been assumed that the morphology seen in humans must be adaptive for habitual bipedal walking, as the habitual use of bipedal walking is generally regarded as one of the most clear-cut differences between humans and apes. This study asks simply whether human skeletal proportions do actually enhance foot performance during human-like bipedalism, by examining the influence of foot proportions on force, torque and work in the foot joints during simulated bipedal walking. Skeletons of the common chimpanzee, orangutan, gorilla and human were represented by multi-rigid-body models, where the components of the foot make external contact via finite element surfaces. The models were driven by identical joint motion functions collected from experiments on human walking. Simulated contact forces between the ground and the foot were found to be reasonably comparable with measurements made during human walking using pressure- and force-platforms. Joint force, torque and work in the foot were then predicted. Within the limitations of our model, the results show that during simulated human-like bipedal walking, (1) the human and non-human ape (NHA) feet carry similar joint forces, although the distributions of the forces differ; (2) the NHA foot incurs larger joint torques than does the human foot, although the human foot has higher values in the first tarso-metatarsal and metatarso-phalangeal joints, whereas the NHA foot incurs higher values in the lateral digits; and (3) total work in the metatarso-phalangeal joints is lower in the human foot than in the NHA foot. The results indicate that human foot proportions are indeed well suited to performance in normal human walking. PMID:24925580

  5. Humans exploit the biomechanics of bipedal gait during visually guided walking over complex terrain

    PubMed Central

    Matthis, Jonathan Samir; Fajen, Brett R.

    2013-01-01

    How do humans achieve such remarkable energetic efficiency when walking over complex terrain such as a rocky trail? Recent research in biomechanics suggests that the efficiency of human walking over flat, obstacle-free terrain derives from the ability to exploit the physical dynamics of our bodies. In this study, we investigated whether this principle also applies to visually guided walking over complex terrain. We found that when humans can see the immediate foreground as little as two step lengths ahead, they are able to choose footholds that allow them to exploit their biomechanical structure as efficiently as they can with unlimited visual information. We conclude that when humans walk over complex terrain, they use visual information from two step lengths ahead to choose footholds that allow them to approximate the energetic efficiency of walking in flat, obstacle-free environments. PMID:23658204

  6. Locomotor energetics and leg length in hominid bipedality.

    PubMed

    Kramer, P A; Eck, G G

    2000-05-01

    Because bipedality is the quintessential characteristic of Hominidae, researchers have compared ancient forms of bipedality with modern human gait since the first clear evidence of bipedal australopithecines was unearthed over 70 years ago. Several researchers have suggested that the australopithecine form of bipedality was transitional between the quadrupedality of the African apes and modern human bipedality and, consequently, inefficient. Other researchers have maintained that australopithecine bipedality was identical to that of Homo. But is it reasonable to require that all forms of hominid bipedality must be the same in order to be optimized? Most attempts to evaluate the locomotor effectiveness of the australopithecines have, unfortunately, assumed that the locomotor anatomy of modern humans is the exemplar of consummate bipedality. Modern human anatomy is, however, the product of selective pressures present in the particular milieu in which Homo arose and it is not necessarily the only, or even the most efficient, bipedal solution possible. In this report, we investigate the locomotion of Australopithecus afarensis, as represented by AL 288-1, using standard mechanical analyses. The osteological anatomy of AL 288-1 and movement profiles derived from modern humans are applied to a dynamic model of a biped, which predicts the mechanical power required by AL 288-1 to walk at various velocities. This same procedure is used with the anatomy of a composite modern woman and a comparison made. We find that AL 288-1 expends less energy than the composite woman when locomoting at walking speeds. This energetic advantage comes, however, at a price: the preferred transition speed (from a walk to a run) of AL 288-1 was lower than that of the composite woman. Consequently, the maximum daily range of AL 288-1 may well have been substantially smaller than that of modern people. The locomotor anatomy of A. afarensis may have been optimized for a particular ecological niche

  7. Compass gait mechanics account for top walking speeds in ducks and humans

    PubMed Central

    Usherwood, James R.; Szymanek, Katie L.; Daley, Monica A.

    2010-01-01

    The constraints to maximum walking speed and the underlying cause of the walk-run transition remains controversial. However, the motions of the body and legs can be reduced to a few mechanical principles, which, if valid, impose simple physics-based limits to walking speed. Bipedal walking may be viewed as a vaulting gait, with the centre of mass passing over a stiff stance leg (an ‘inverted pendulum’), while the swing leg swings forward (as a pendulum). At its simplest, this forms a ‘compass gait’ walker, which has a maximum walking speed constrained by simple mechanics: walk too fast, or with too high a step length, and gravity fails to keep the stance foot attached to the floor. But how useful is such an extremely reductionist model? Here, we report measurements on a range of duck breeds as example unspecialized, non-planar, crouch-limbed walkers, and contrast these findings with previous measurements on humans, using the theoretical framework of compass gait walking. Ducks walked as inverted pendulums with near-passive swing-legs up to relative velocities around 0.5, remarkably consistent with the theoretical model. In contrast, top walking speeds in humans cannot be achieved with passive swing legs: humans, while still constrained by compass gait mechanics, extend their envelope of walking speeds by using relatively high step frequencies. Therefore, the capacity to drive the swing leg forward by walking humans may be a specialization for walking, allowing near-passive vaulting of the centre of mass at walking speeds 4/3 that possible with a passive (duck-like) swing leg. PMID:19011215

  8. Bipedal locomotion in granular media

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kingsbury, Mark; Zhang, Tingnan; Goldman, Daniel

    Bipedal walking, locomotion characterized by alternating swing and double support phase, is well studied on ground where feet do not penetrate the substrate. On granular media like sand however, intrusion and extrusion phases also occur. In these phases, relative motion of the two feet requires that one or both feet slip through the material, degrading performance. To study walking in these phases, we designed and studied a planarized bipedal robot (1.6 kg, 42 cm) that walked in a fluidized bed of poppy seeds. We also simulated the robot in a multibody software environment (Chrono) using granular resistive force theory (RFT) to calculate foot forces. In experiment and simulation, the robot experienced slip during the intrusion phase, with the experiment presenting additional slip due to motor control error during the double support phase. This exaggerated slip gave insight (through analysis of ground reaction forces in simulation) into how slip occurs when relative motion exists between the two feet in the granular media, where the foot with higher relative drag forces (from its instantaneous orientation, rotation, relative direction of motion, and depth) remains stationary. With this relationship, we generated walking gaits for the robot to walk with minimal slip.

  9. Form and function of the human and chimpanzee forefoot: implications for early hominin bipedalism.

    PubMed

    Fernández, Peter J; Holowka, Nicholas B; Demes, Brigitte; Jungers, William L

    2016-01-01

    During bipedal walking, modern humans dorsiflex their forefoot at the metatarsophalangeal joints (MTPJs) prior to push off, which tightens the plantar soft tissues to convert the foot into a stiff propulsive lever. Particular features of metatarsal head morphology such as "dorsal doming" are thought to facilitate this stiffening mechanism. In contrast, chimpanzees are believed to possess MTPJ morphology that precludes high dorsiflexion excursions during terrestrial locomotion. The morphological affinity of the metatarsal heads has been used to reconstruct locomotor behavior in fossil hominins, but few studies have provided detailed empirical data to validate the assumed link between morphology and function at the MTPJs. Using three-dimensional kinematic and morphometric analyses, we show that humans push off with greater peak dorsiflexion angles at all MTPJs than do chimpanzees during bipedal and quadrupedal walking, with the greatest disparity occurring at MTPJ 1. Among MTPJs 2-5, both species exhibit decreasing peak angles from medial to lateral. This kinematic pattern is mirrored in the morphometric analyses of metatarsal head shape. Analyses of Australopithecus afarensis metatarsals reveal morphology intermediate between humans and chimpanzees, suggesting that this species used different bipedal push-off kinematics than modern humans, perhaps resulting in a less efficient form of bipedalism. PMID:27464580

  10. Form and function of the human and chimpanzee forefoot: implications for early hominin bipedalism

    PubMed Central

    Fernández, Peter J.; Holowka, Nicholas B.; Demes, Brigitte; Jungers, William L.

    2016-01-01

    During bipedal walking, modern humans dorsiflex their forefoot at the metatarsophalangeal joints (MTPJs) prior to push off, which tightens the plantar soft tissues to convert the foot into a stiff propulsive lever. Particular features of metatarsal head morphology such as “dorsal doming” are thought to facilitate this stiffening mechanism. In contrast, chimpanzees are believed to possess MTPJ morphology that precludes high dorsiflexion excursions during terrestrial locomotion. The morphological affinity of the metatarsal heads has been used to reconstruct locomotor behavior in fossil hominins, but few studies have provided detailed empirical data to validate the assumed link between morphology and function at the MTPJs. Using three-dimensional kinematic and morphometric analyses, we show that humans push off with greater peak dorsiflexion angles at all MTPJs than do chimpanzees during bipedal and quadrupedal walking, with the greatest disparity occurring at MTPJ 1. Among MTPJs 2–5, both species exhibit decreasing peak angles from medial to lateral. This kinematic pattern is mirrored in the morphometric analyses of metatarsal head shape. Analyses of Australopithecus afarensis metatarsals reveal morphology intermediate between humans and chimpanzees, suggesting that this species used different bipedal push-off kinematics than modern humans, perhaps resulting in a less efficient form of bipedalism. PMID:27464580

  11. Three-dimensional kinematics of capuchin monkey bipedalism.

    PubMed

    Demes, Brigitte

    2011-05-01

    Capuchin monkeys are known to use bipedalism when transporting food items and tools. The bipedal gait of two capuchin monkeys in the laboratory was studied with three-dimensional kinematics. Capuchins progress bipedally with a bent-hip, bent-knee gait. The knee collapses into flexion during stance and the hip drops in height. The knee is also highly flexed during swing to allow the foot which is plantarflexed to clear the ground. The forefoot makes first contact at touchdown. Stride frequency is high, and stride length and limb excursion low. Hind limb retraction is limited, presumably to reduce the pitch moment of the forward-leaning trunk. Unlike human bipedalism, the bipedal gait of capuchins is not a vaulting gait, and energy recovery from pendulum-like exchanges is unlikely. It extends into speeds at which humans and other animals run, but without a human-like gait transition. In this respect it resembles avian bipedal gaits. It remains to be tested whether energy is recovered through cyclic elastic storage and release as in bipedal birds at higher speeds. Capuchin bipedalism has many features in common with the facultative bipedalism of other primates which is further evidence for restrictions on a fully upright striding gait in primates that transition to bipedalism. It differs from the facultative bipedalism of other primates in the lack of an extended double-support phase and short aerial phases at higher speeds that make it a run by kinematic definition. This demonstrates that facultative bipedalism of quadrupedal primates need not necessarily be a walking gait. PMID:21365612

  12. Laetoli Footprints Preserve Earliest Direct Evidence of Human-Like Bipedal Biomechanics

    PubMed Central

    Raichlen, David A.; Gordon, Adam D.; Harcourt-Smith, William E. H.; Foster, Adam D.; Haas, Wm. Randall

    2010-01-01

    Background Debates over the evolution of hominin bipedalism, a defining human characteristic, revolve around whether early bipeds walked more like humans, with energetically efficient extended hind limbs, or more like apes with flexed hind limbs. The 3.6 million year old hominin footprints at Laetoli, Tanzania represent the earliest direct evidence of hominin bipedalism. Determining the kinematics of Laetoli hominins will allow us to understand whether selection acted to decrease energy costs of bipedalism by 3.6 Ma. Methodology/Principal Findings Using an experimental design, we show that the Laetoli hominins walked with weight transfer most similar to the economical extended limb bipedalism of humans. Humans walked through a sand trackway using both extended limb bipedalism, and more flexed limb bipedalism. Footprint morphology from extended limb trials matches weight distribution patterns found in the Laetoli footprints. Conclusions These results provide us with the earliest direct evidence of kinematically human-like bipedalism currently known, and show that extended limb bipedalism evolved long before the appearance of the genus Homo. Since extended-limb bipedalism is more energetically economical than ape-like bipedalism, energy expenditure was likely an important selection pressure on hominin bipeds by 3.6 Ma. PMID:20339543

  13. Adaptations for economical bipedal running: the effect of limb structure on three-dimensional joint mechanics.

    PubMed

    Rubenson, Jonas; Lloyd, David G; Heliams, Denham B; Besier, Thor F; Fournier, Paul A

    2011-05-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine the mechanical adaptations linked to economical locomotion in cursorial bipeds. We addressed this question by comparing mass-matched humans and avian bipeds (ostriches), which exhibit marked differences in limb structure and running economy. We hypothesized that the nearly 50 per cent lower energy cost of running in ostriches is a result of: (i) lower limb-swing mechanical power, (ii) greater stance-phase storage and release of elastic energy, and (iii) lower total muscle power output. To test these hypotheses, we used three-dimensional joint mechanical measurements and a simple model to estimate the elastic and muscle contributions to joint work and power. Contradictory to our first hypothesis, we found that ostriches and humans generate the same amounts of mechanical power to swing the limbs at a similar self-selected running speed, indicating that limb swing probably does not contribute to the difference in energy cost of running between these species. In contrast, we estimated that ostriches generate 120 per cent more stance-phase mechanical joint power via release of elastic energy compared with humans. This elastic mechanical power occurs nearly exclusively at the tarsometatarso-phalangeal joint, demonstrating a shift of mechanical power generation to distal joints compared with humans. We also estimated that positive muscle fibre power is 35 per cent lower in ostriches compared with humans, and is accounted for primarily by higher capacity for storage and release of elastic energy. Furthermore, our analysis revealed much larger frontal and internal/external rotation joint loads during ostrich running than in humans. Together, these findings support the hypothesis that a primary limb structure specialization linked to economical running in cursorial species is an elevated storage and release of elastic energy in tendon. In the ostrich, energy-saving specializations may also include passive frontal and internal

  14. Laetoli footprints reveal bipedal gait biomechanics different from those of modern humans and chimpanzees.

    PubMed

    Hatala, Kevin G; Demes, Brigitte; Richmond, Brian G

    2016-08-17

    Bipedalism is a key adaptation that shaped human evolution, yet the timing and nature of its evolution remain unclear. Here we use new experimentally based approaches to investigate the locomotor mechanics preserved by the famous Pliocene hominin footprints from Laetoli, Tanzania. We conducted footprint formation experiments with habitually barefoot humans and with chimpanzees to quantitatively compare their footprints to those preserved at Laetoli. Our results show that the Laetoli footprints are morphologically distinct from those of both chimpanzees and habitually barefoot modern humans. By analysing biomechanical data that were collected during the human experiments we, for the first time, directly link differences between the Laetoli and modern human footprints to specific biomechanical variables. We find that the Laetoli hominin probably used a more flexed limb posture at foot strike than modern humans when walking bipedally. The Laetoli footprints provide a clear snapshot of an early hominin bipedal gait that probably involved a limb posture that was slightly but significantly different from our own, and these data support the hypothesis that important evolutionary changes to hominin bipedalism occurred within the past 3.66 Myr. PMID:27488647

  15. Acquisition of bipedalism: the Miocene hominoid record and modern analogues for bipedal protohominids

    PubMed Central

    Nakatsukasa, Masato

    2004-01-01

    The well-known fossil hominoid Proconsul from the Early Miocene of Kenya was a non-specialized arboreal quadruped with strong pollicial/hallucial assisted grasping capability. It lacked most of the suspensory specializations acquired in living hominoids. Nacholapithecus, however, from the Middle Miocene of Kenya, although in part sharing with Proconsul the common primitive anatomical body design, was more specialized for orthograde climbing, ‘hoisting’ and bridging, with the glenoid fossae of the scapula probably being cranially orientated, the forelimbs proportionally large, and very long toes. Its tail loss suggests relatively slow movement, although tail loss may already have occurred in Proconsul. Nacholapithecus-like positional behaviour might thus have been a basis for development of more suspensory specialized positional behaviour in later hominoids. Unfortunately, after 13 Ma, there is a gap in the hominoid postcranial record in Africa until 6 Ma. Due to this gap, a scenario for later locomotor evolution prior to the divergence of Homo and Pan cannot be determined with certainty. The time gap also causes difficulties when we seek to determine polarities of morphological traits in very early hominids. Interpretation of the form–function relationships of postcranial features in incipient hominids will be difficult because it is predicted that they had incorporated bipedalism only moderately into their total positional repertoires. However, Japanese macaques, which are trained in traditional bipedal performance, may provide useful hints about bipedal adaptation in the protohominids. Kinematic analyses revealed that these macaques walked bipedally with a longer stride and lower stride frequency than used by ordinary macaques, owing to a more extended posture of the hindlimb joints. The body centre of gravity rises during the single-support phase of stance. Energetic studies of locomotion in these bipedal macaques revealed that energetic expenditure was 20

  16. Walk-Startup of a Two-Legged Walking Mechanism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Babković, Kalman; Nagy, László; Krklješ, Damir; Borovac, Branislav

    There is a growing interest towards humanoid robots. One of their most important characteristic is the two-legged motion - walk. Starting and stopping of humanoid robots introduce substantial delays. In this paper, the goal is to explore the possibility of using a short unbalanced state of the biped robot to quickly gain speed and achieve the steady state velocity during a period shorter than half of the single support phase. The proposed method is verified by simulation. Maintainig a steady state, balanced gait is not considered in this paper.

  17. Emergence of adaptability to time delay in bipedal locomotion.

    PubMed

    Ohgane, Kunishige; Ei, Shin-Ichiro; Kazutoshi, Kudo; Ohtsuki, Tatsuyuki

    2004-02-01

    Based on neurophysiological evidence, theoretical studies have shown that locomotion is generated by mutual entrainment between the oscillatory activities of central pattern generators (CPGs) and body motion. However, it has also been shown that the time delay in the sensorimotor loop can destabilize mutual entrainment and result in the failure to walk. In this study, a new mechanism called flexible-phase locking is proposed to overcome the time delay. It is realized by employing the Bonhoeffer-Van der Pol formalism - well known as a physiologically faithful neuronal model - for neurons in the CPG. The formalism states that neurons modulate their phase according to the delay so that mutual entrainment is stabilized. Flexible-phase locking derives from the phase dynamics related to an asymptotically stable limit cycle of the neuron. The effectiveness of the mechanism is verified by computer simulations of a bipedal locomotion model. PMID:14999479

  18. A non-human primate model of bipedal locomotion under restrained condition allowing gait studies and single unit brain recordings.

    PubMed

    Goetz, L; Piallat, B; Thibaudier, Y; Montigon, O; David, O; Chabardès, S

    2012-03-15

    For decades, several animal models of locomotion have allowed a better understanding of the basic physiological mechanisms of gait. However, unlike most of the mammals, the Order Primates is characterized by fundamental changes in locomotor behaviour. In particular, some primates use a specific pattern of locomotion and are able to naturally walk bipedally due possibly to a specific supra-spinal control of locomotion. These features must be taken into account when one considers to study the intrinsic properties of human gait. Thus, an experimental model of bipedal locomotion allowing precise and reproducible analysis of gait in non-human primate is still lacking. This study describes a non-human primate model of bipedal locomotion under restrained condition. We undertook a kinematic and biomechanic study in three Macaca fascicularis trained to walk bipedally on a treadmill. One of the primate was evaluated in complete head fixation. Gait visual analysis and electromyographic recordings provided pertinent description of the gait pattern. Step frequencies, step lengths, cycle and stance phase durations were correlated with Froude number (dimensionless velocity), whereas swing phase durations remained non-correlated. Gait patterns observed in our model were similar to those obtained in freely bipedal Macaca fuscata and to a lesser extend to Humans. Gait pattern was not modified by head fixation thereby allowing us to perform precise and repetitive micro electrode recordings of deep cerebral structures. Thus, the present model could provide a pertinent pre-clinical tool to study gait parameters and their neuronal control but also could be helpful to validate new therapeutics interventions. PMID:22155386

  19. The strategic role of the tail in maintaining balance while carrying a load bipedally in wild capuchins (Sapajus libidinosus): a pilot study.

    PubMed

    Massaro, Luciana; Massa, Fabrizio; Simpson, Kathy; Fragaszy, Dorothy; Visalberghi, Elisabetta

    2016-04-01

    The ability to carry objects has been considered an important selective pressure favoring the evolution of bipedal locomotion in early hominins. Comparable behaviors by extant primates have been studied very little, as few primates habitually carry objects bipedally. However, wild bearded capuchins living at Fazenda Boa Vista spontaneously and habitually transport stone tools by walking bipedally, allowing us to examine the characteristics of bipedal locomotion during object transport by a generalized primate. In this pilot study, we investigated the mechanical aspects of position and velocity of the center of mass, trunk inclination, and forelimb postures, and the torque of the forces applied on each anatomical segment in wild bearded capuchin monkeys during the transport of objects, with particular attention to the tail and its role in balancing the body. Our results indicate that body mass strongly affects the posture of transport and that capuchins are able to carry heavy loads bipedally with a bent-hip-bent-knee posture, thanks to the "strategic" use of their extendable tail; in fact, without this anatomical structure, constituting only 5 % of their body mass, they would be unable to transport the loads that they habitually carry. PMID:26733456

  20. Disparity and convergence in bipedal archosaur locomotion

    PubMed Central

    Bates, K. T.; Schachner, E. R.

    2012-01-01

    This study aims to investigate functional disparity in the locomotor apparatus of bipedal archosaurs. We use reconstructions of hindlimb myology of extant and extinct archosaurs to generate musculoskeletal biomechanical models to test hypothesized convergence between bipedal crocodile-line archosaurs and dinosaurs. Quantitative comparison of muscle leverage supports the inference that bipedal crocodile-line archosaurs and non-avian theropods had highly convergent hindlimb myology, suggesting similar muscular mechanics and neuromuscular control of locomotion. While these groups independently evolved similar musculoskeletal solutions to the challenges of parasagittally erect bipedalism, differences also clearly exist, particularly the distinct hip and crurotarsal ankle morphology characteristic of many pseudosuchian archosaurs. Furthermore, comparative analyses of muscle design in extant archosaurs reveal that muscular parameters such as size and architecture are more highly adapted or optimized for habitual locomotion than moment arms. The importance of these aspects of muscle design, which are not directly retrievable from fossils, warns against over-extrapolating the functional significance of anatomical convergences. Nevertheless, links identified between posture, muscle moments and neural control in archosaur locomotion suggest that functional interpretations of osteological changes in limb anatomy traditionally linked to postural evolution in Late Triassic archosaurs could be constrained through musculoskeletal modelling. PMID:22112652

  1. 4. Band Wheel and Walking Beam Mechanism, Including Remains of ...

    Library of Congress Historic Buildings Survey, Historic Engineering Record, Historic Landscapes Survey

    4. Band Wheel and Walking Beam Mechanism, Including Remains of Frame Belt House, Looking Southeast - David Renfrew Oil Rig, East side of Connoquenessing Creek, 0.4 mile North of confluence with Thorn Creek, Renfrew, Butler County, PA

  2. A mechanical protocol to replicate impact in walking footwear.

    PubMed

    Price, Carina; Cooper, Glen; Graham-Smith, Philip; Jones, Richard

    2014-01-01

    Impact testing is undertaken to quantify the shock absorption characteristics of footwear. The current widely reported mechanical testing method mimics the heel impact in running and therefore applies excessive energy to walking footwear. The purpose of this study was to modify the ASTM protocol F1614 (Procedure A) to better represent walking gait. This was achieved by collecting kinematic and kinetic data while participants walked in four different styles of walking footwear (trainer, oxford shoe, flip-flop and triple-density sandal). The quantified heel-velocity and effective mass at ground-impact were then replicated in a mechanical protocol. The kinematic data identified different impact characteristics in the footwear styles. Significantly faster heel velocity towards the floor was recorded walking in the toe-post sandals (flip-flop and triple-density sandal) compared with other conditions (e.g. flip-flop: 0.36±0.05 ms(-1) versus trainer: 0.18±0.06 ms(-1)). The mechanical protocol was adapted by altering the mass and drop height specific to the data captured for each shoe (e.g. flip-flop: drop height 7 mm, mass 16.2 kg). As expected, the adapted mechanical protocol produced significantly lower peak force and accelerometer values than the ASTM protocol (p<.001). The mean difference between the human and adapted protocol was 12.7±17.5% (p<.001) for peak acceleration and 25.2±17.7% (p=.786) for peak force. This paper demonstrates that altered mechanical test protocols can more closely replicate loading on the lower limb in walking. This therefore suggests that testing of material properties of footbeds not only needs to be gait style specific (e.g. running versus walking), but also footwear style specific. PMID:24618371

  3. Arboreality, terrestriality and bipedalism

    PubMed Central

    Crompton, Robin Huw; Sellers, William I.; Thorpe, Susannah K. S.

    2010-01-01

    The full publication of Ardipithecus ramidus has particular importance for the origins of hominin bipedality, and strengthens the growing case for an arboreal origin. Palaeontological techniques however inevitably concentrate on details of fragmentary postcranial bones and can benefit from a whole-animal perspective. This can be provided by field studies of locomotor behaviour, which provide a real-world perspective of adaptive context, against which conclusions drawn from palaeontology and comparative osteology may be assessed and honed. Increasingly sophisticated dynamic modelling techniques, validated against experimental data for living animals, offer a different perspective where evolutionary and virtual ablation experiments, impossible for living mammals, may be run in silico, and these can analyse not only the interactions and behaviour of rigid segments but increasingly the effects of compliance, which are of crucial importance in guiding the evolution of an arboreally derived lineage. PMID:20855304

  4. Mechanics and energetics of level walking with powered ankle exoskeletons.

    PubMed

    Sawicki, Gregory S; Ferris, Daniel P

    2008-05-01

    Robotic lower limb exoskeletons that can alter joint mechanical power output are novel tools for studying the relationship between the mechanics and energetics of human locomotion. We built pneumatically powered ankle exoskeletons controlled by the user's own soleus electromyography (i.e. proportional myoelectric control) to determine whether mechanical assistance at the ankle joint could reduce the metabolic cost of level, steady-speed human walking. We hypothesized that subjects would reduce their net metabolic power in proportion to the average positive mechanical power delivered by the bilateral ankle exoskeletons. Nine healthy individuals completed three 30 min sessions walking at 1.25 m s(-1) while wearing the exoskeletons. Over the three sessions, subjects' net metabolic energy expenditure during powered walking progressed from +7% to -10% of that during unpowered walking. With practice, subjects significantly reduced soleus muscle activity (by approximately 28% root mean square EMG, P<0.0001) and negative exoskeleton mechanical power (-0.09 W kg(-1) at the beginning of session 1 and -0.03 W kg(-1) at the end of session 3; P=0.005). Ankle joint kinematics returned to similar patterns to those observed during unpowered walking. At the end of the third session, the powered exoskeletons delivered approximately 63% of the average ankle joint positive mechanical power and approximately 22% of the total positive mechanical power generated by all of the joints summed (ankle, knee and hip) during unpowered walking. Decreases in total joint positive mechanical power due to powered ankle assistance ( approximately 22%) were not proportional to reductions in net metabolic power ( approximately 10%). The ;apparent efficiency' of the ankle joint muscle-tendon system during human walking ( approximately 0.61) was much greater than reported values of the ;muscular efficiency' of positive mechanical work for human muscle ( approximately 0.10-0.34). High ankle joint

  5. Walking Is Not Like Reaching: Evidence from Periodic Mechanical Perturbations

    PubMed Central

    Ahn, Jooeun; Hogan, Neville

    2012-01-01

    The control architecture underlying human reaching has been established, at least in broad outline. However, despite extensive research, the control architecture underlying human locomotion remains unclear. Some studies show evidence of high-level control focused on lower-limb trajectories; others suggest that nonlinear oscillators such as lower-level rhythmic central pattern generators (CPGs) play a significant role. To resolve this ambiguity, we reasoned that if a nonlinear oscillator contributes to locomotor control, human walking should exhibit dynamic entrainment to periodic mechanical perturbation; entrainment is a distinctive behavior of nonlinear oscillators. Here we present the first behavioral evidence that nonlinear neuro-mechanical oscillators contribute to the production of human walking, albeit weakly. As unimpaired human subjects walked at constant speed, we applied periodic torque pulses to the ankle at periods different from their preferred cadence. The gait period of 18 out of 19 subjects entrained to this mechanical perturbation, converging to match that of the perturbation. Significantly, entrainment occurred only if the perturbation period was close to subjects' preferred walking cadence: it exhibited a narrow basin of entrainment. Further, regardless of the phase within the walking cycle at which perturbation was initiated, subjects' gait synchronized or phase-locked with the mechanical perturbation at a phase of gait where it assisted propulsion. These results were affected neither by auditory feedback nor by a distractor task. However, the convergence to phase-locking was slow. These characteristics indicate that nonlinear neuro-mechanical oscillators make at most a modest contribution to human walking. Our results suggest that human locomotor control is not organized as in reaching to meet a predominantly kinematic specification, but is hierarchically organized with a semi-autonomous peripheral oscillator operating under episodic

  6. Mechanics and energetics of incline walking with robotic ankle exoskeletons.

    PubMed

    Sawicki, Gregory S; Ferris, Daniel P

    2009-01-01

    We examined healthy human subjects wearing robotic ankle exoskeletons to study the metabolic cost of ankle muscle-tendon work during uphill walking. The exoskeletons were powered by artificial pneumatic muscles and controlled by the user's soleus electromyography. We hypothesized that as the demand for net positive external mechanical work increased with surface gradient, the positive work delivered by ankle exoskeletons would produce greater reductions in users' metabolic cost. Nine human subjects walked at 1.25 m s(-1) on gradients of 0%, 5%, 10% and 15%. We compared rates of O(2) consumption and CO(2) production, exoskeleton mechanics, joint kinematics, and surface electromyography between unpowered and powered exoskeleton conditions. On steeper inclines, ankle exoskeletons delivered more average positive mechanical power (P<0.0001; +0.37+/-0.03 W kg(-1) at 15% grade and +0.23+/-0.02 W kg(-1) at 0% grade) and reduced subjects' net metabolic power by more (P<0.0001; -0.98+/-0.12 W kg(-1) at 15% grade and -0.45+/-0.07 W kg(-1) at 0% grade). Soleus muscle activity was reduced by 16-25% when wearing powered exoskeletons on all surface gradients (P<0.0008). The ;apparent efficiency' of ankle muscle-tendon mechanical work decreased from 0.53 on level ground to 0.38 on 15% grade. This suggests a decreased contribution from previously stored Achilles' tendon elastic energy and an increased contribution from actively shortening ankle plantar flexor muscle fibers to ankle muscle-tendon positive work during walking on steep uphill inclines. Although exoskeletons delivered 61% more mechanical work at the ankle up a 15% grade compared with level walking, relative reductions in net metabolic power were similar across surface gradients (10-13%). These results suggest a shift in the relative distribution of mechanical power output to more proximal (knee and hip) joints during inclined walking. PMID:19088208

  7. Kinetics of bipedal locomotion during load carrying in capuchin monkeys.

    PubMed

    Hanna, Jandy B; Schmitt, Daniel; Wright, Kristin; Eshchar, Yonat; Visalberghi, Elisabetta; Fragaszy, Dorothy

    2015-08-01

    Facultative bipedalism during load transport in nonhuman primates has been argued to be an important behavior potentially leading to the evolution of obligate, extended limb bipedalism. Understanding the biomechanics of such behavior may lead to insights about associated morphology, which may translate to interpretation of features in the fossil record. Some populations of bearded capuchin monkeys (Sapajus libidinosus) spontaneously carry heavy loads bipedally during foraging activities. This study provides the first data on all three components of ground reaction force for spontaneous bipedalism during load carriage in a nonhuman primate. Five individual S. libidinosus (mean body mass = 2.4 kg ± 0.96) were videorecorded during bipedalism while carrying a stone (0.93 kg) under natural conditions. A force plate was embedded in the path of the monkeys. Spatiotemporal and force data for all three components of the ground reaction force were recorded for 28 steps. Capuchins exhibited a mean vertical peak force per total weight (Vpk) for the hindlimb of 1.19 (sd = 0.13), consistent with those of unloaded capuchins in the laboratory and for other bipedal primates, including humans. Vertical force records suggest that capuchins, along with most nonhuman primates, maintain a relatively compliant leg during both unloaded and loaded locomotion. Like all other primates, loaded capuchins maintained laterally (outward) directed medio-lateral forces, presumably to stabilize side-to-side movements of the center of mass. Medio-lateral forces suggest that at near-running speeds dynamic stability diminishes the need to generate high lateral forces. Vertical force traces exhibited a measurable impact spike at foot contact in 85% of the steps recorded. An impact spike is common in human walking and running but has not been reported in other bipedal primates. This spike in humans is thought to lead to bone and cartilage damage. The earliest biped may have experienced similar

  8. The Cost of Leg Forces in Bipedal Locomotion: A Simple Optimization Study

    PubMed Central

    Rebula, John R.; Kuo, Arthur D.

    2015-01-01

    Simple optimization models show that bipedal locomotion may largely be governed by the mechanical work performed by the legs, minimization of which can automatically discover walking and running gaits. Work minimization can reproduce broad aspects of human ground reaction forces, such as a double-peaked profile for walking and a single peak for running, but the predicted peaks are unrealistically high and impulsive compared to the much smoother forces produced by humans. The smoothness might be explained better by a cost for the force rather than work produced by the legs, but it is unclear what features of force might be most relevant. We therefore tested a generalized force cost that can penalize force amplitude or its n-th time derivative, raised to the p-th power (or p-norm), across a variety of combinations for n and p. A simple model shows that this generalized force cost only produces smoother, human-like forces if it penalizes the rate rather than amplitude of force production, and only in combination with a work cost. Such a combined objective reproduces the characteristic profiles of human walking (R2 = 0.96) and running (R2 = 0.92), more so than minimization of either work or force amplitude alone (R2 = −0.79 and R2 = 0.22, respectively, for walking). Humans might find it preferable to avoid rapid force production, which may be mechanically and physiologically costly. PMID:25707000

  9. First steps of bipedality in hominids: evidence from the atelid and proconsulid pelvis.

    PubMed

    Machnicki, Allison L; Spurlock, Linda B; Strier, Karen B; Reno, Philip L; Lovejoy, C Owen

    2016-01-01

    Upright walking absent a bent-hip-bent-knee gait requires lumbar lordosis, a ubiquitous feature in all hominids for which it can be observed. Its first appearance is therefore a central problem in human evolution. Atelids, which use the tail during suspension, exhibit demonstrable lordosis and can achieve full extension of their hind limbs during terrestrial upright stance. Although obviously homoplastic with hominids, the pelvic mechanisms facilitating lordosis appear largely similar in both taxa with respect to abbreviation of upper iliac height coupled with broad sacral alae. Both provide spatial separation of the most caudal lumbar(s) from the iliac blades. A broad sacrum is therefore a likely facet of earliest hominid bipedality. All tailed monkeys have broad alae. By contrast all extant apes have very narrow sacra, which promote "trapping" of their most caudal lumbars to achieve lower trunk rigidity during suspension. The alae in the tailless proconsul Ekembo nyanzae appear to have been quite broad, a character state that may have been primitive in Miocene hominoids not yet adapted to suspension and, by extension, exaptive for earliest bipedality in the hominid/panid last common ancestor. This hypothesis receives strong support from other anatomical systems preserved in Ardipithecus ramidus. PMID:26793418

  10. First steps of bipedality in hominids: evidence from the atelid and proconsulid pelvis

    PubMed Central

    Machnicki, Allison L.; Spurlock, Linda B.; Strier, Karen B.

    2016-01-01

    Upright walking absent a bent-hip-bent-knee gait requires lumbar lordosis, a ubiquitous feature in all hominids for which it can be observed. Its first appearance is therefore a central problem in human evolution. Atelids, which use the tail during suspension, exhibit demonstrable lordosis and can achieve full extension of their hind limbs during terrestrial upright stance. Although obviously homoplastic with hominids, the pelvic mechanisms facilitating lordosis appear largely similar in both taxa with respect to abbreviation of upper iliac height coupled with broad sacral alae. Both provide spatial separation of the most caudal lumbar(s) from the iliac blades. A broad sacrum is therefore a likely facet of earliest hominid bipedality. All tailed monkeys have broad alae. By contrast all extant apes have very narrow sacra, which promote “trapping” of their most caudal lumbars to achieve lower trunk rigidity during suspension. The alae in the tailless proconsul Ekembo nyanzae appear to have been quite broad, a character state that may have been primitive in Miocene hominoids not yet adapted to suspension and, by extension, exaptive for earliest bipedality in the hominid/panid last common ancestor. This hypothesis receives strong support from other anatomical systems preserved in Ardipithecus ramidus. PMID:26793418

  11. Influence of Ligament Properties on Tibiofemoral Mechanics in Walking.

    PubMed

    Smith, Colin R; Lenhart, Rachel L; Kaiser, Jarred; Vignos, Michael F; Thelen, Darryl G

    2016-02-01

    Computational knee models provide a powerful platform to investigate the effects of injury and surgery on functional knee behavior. The objective of this study was to use a multibody knee model to investigate the influence of ligament properties on tibiofemoral kinematics and cartilage contact pressures in the stance phase of walking. The knee model included 14 ligament bundles and articular cartilage contact acting across the tibiofemoral and patellofemoral joints. The knee was incorporated into a lower extremity musculoskeletal model and was used to simulate knee mechanics during the stance phase of normal walking. A Monte Carlo approach was employed to assess the influence of ligament stiffness and reference strain on knee mechanics. The anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), medial collateral ligament (MCL), and posterior capsule properties exhibited significant influence on anterior tibial translation at heel strike, with the ACL acting as the primary restraint to anterior translation in mid-stance. The MCL and lateral collateral ligament (LCL) exhibited the greatest influence on tibial rotation from heel strike through mid-stance. Simulated tibial plateau contact location was dependent on the ACL, MCL, and LCL properties, while pressure magnitudes were most dependent on the ACL. A decrease in ACL stiffness or reference strain significantly increased the average contact pressure in mid-stance, with the pressure migrating posteriorly on the medial tibial plateau. These ligament-dependent shifts in tibiofemoral cartilage contact during walking are potentially relevant to consider when investigating the causes of early-onset osteoarthritis following knee ligament injury and surgical treatment. PMID:26408997

  12. Simultaneous positive and negative external mechanical work in human walking.

    PubMed

    Donelan, J Maxwell; Kram, Rodger; Kuo, Arthur D

    2002-01-01

    In human walking, the center of mass motion is similar to an inverted pendulum. Viewing double support as a transition from one inverted pendulum to the next, we hypothesized that the leading leg performs negative work to redirect the center of mass velocity, while simultaneously, the trailing leg performs positive work to replace the lost energy. To test this hypothesis, we developed a method to quantify the external mechanical work performed by each limb (individual limbs method). Traditional measures of external mechanical work use the sum of the ground reaction forces acting on the limbs (combined limbs method) allowing for the mathematical cancellation of simultaneous positive and negative work during multiple support periods. We expected to find that the traditional combined limbs method underestimates external mechanical work by a substantial amount. We used both methods to measure the external mechanical work performed by humans walking over a range of speeds. We found that during double support, the legs perform a substantial amount of positive and negative external work simultaneously. The combined limbs measures of positive and negative external work were approximately 33% less than those calculated using the individual limbs method. At all speeds, the trailing leg performs greater than 97% of the double support positive work while the leading leg performs greater than 94% of the double support negative work. PMID:11747890

  13. Mechanical Energy Recovery during Walking in Patients with Parkinson Disease

    PubMed Central

    Dipaola, Mariangela; Pavan, Esteban E.; Cattaneo, Andrea; Frazzitta, Giuseppe; Pezzoli, Gianni; Cavallari, Paolo; Frigo, Carlo A.

    2016-01-01

    The mechanisms of mechanical energy recovery during gait have been thoroughly investigated in healthy subjects, but never described in patients with Parkinson disease (PD). The aim of this study was to investigate whether such mechanisms are preserved in PD patients despite an altered pattern of locomotion. We consecutively enrolled 23 PD patients (mean age 64±9 years) with bilateral symptoms (H&Y ≥II) if able to walk unassisted in medication-off condition (overnight suspension of all dopaminergic drugs). Ten healthy subjects (mean age 62±3 years) walked both at their ‘preferred’ and ‘slow’ speeds, to match the whole range of PD velocities. Kinematic data were recorded by means of an optoelectronic motion analyzer. For each stride we computed spatio-temporal parameters, time-course and range of motion (ROM) of hip, knee and ankle joint angles. We also measured kinetic (Wk), potential (Wp), total (WtotCM) energy variations and the energy recovery index (ER). Along with PD progression, we found a significant correlation of WtotCM and Wp with knee ROM and in particular with knee extension in terminal stance phase. Wk and ER were instead mainly related to gait velocity. In PD subjects, the reduction of knee ROM significantly diminished both Wp and WtotCM. Rehabilitation treatments should possibly integrate passive and active mobilization of knee to prevent a reduction of gait-related energetic components. PMID:27258183

  14. Mechanical Energy Recovery during Walking in Patients with Parkinson Disease.

    PubMed

    Dipaola, Mariangela; Pavan, Esteban E; Cattaneo, Andrea; Frazzitta, Giuseppe; Pezzoli, Gianni; Cavallari, Paolo; Frigo, Carlo A; Isaias, Ioannis U

    2016-01-01

    The mechanisms of mechanical energy recovery during gait have been thoroughly investigated in healthy subjects, but never described in patients with Parkinson disease (PD). The aim of this study was to investigate whether such mechanisms are preserved in PD patients despite an altered pattern of locomotion. We consecutively enrolled 23 PD patients (mean age 64±9 years) with bilateral symptoms (H&Y ≥II) if able to walk unassisted in medication-off condition (overnight suspension of all dopaminergic drugs). Ten healthy subjects (mean age 62±3 years) walked both at their 'preferred' and 'slow' speeds, to match the whole range of PD velocities. Kinematic data were recorded by means of an optoelectronic motion analyzer. For each stride we computed spatio-temporal parameters, time-course and range of motion (ROM) of hip, knee and ankle joint angles. We also measured kinetic (Wk), potential (Wp), total (WtotCM) energy variations and the energy recovery index (ER). Along with PD progression, we found a significant correlation of WtotCM and Wp with knee ROM and in particular with knee extension in terminal stance phase. Wk and ER were instead mainly related to gait velocity. In PD subjects, the reduction of knee ROM significantly diminished both Wp and WtotCM. Rehabilitation treatments should possibly integrate passive and active mobilization of knee to prevent a reduction of gait-related energetic components. PMID:27258183

  15. Human balance, the evolution of bipedalism and dysequilibrium syndrome.

    PubMed

    Skoyles, John R

    2006-01-01

    A new model of the uniqueness, nature and evolution of human bipedality is presented in the context of the etiology of the balance disorder of dysequilibrium syndrome. Human bipedality is biologically novel in several remarkable respects. Humans are (a) obligate, habitual and diverse in their bipedalism, (b) hold their body carriage spinally erect in a multisegmental "antigravity pole", (c) use their forelimbs exclusively for nonlocomotion, (d) support their body weight exclusively by vertical balance and normally never use prehensile holds. Further, human bipedalism is combined with (e) upper body actions that quickly shift the body's center of mass (e.g. tennis serves, piggy-back carrying of children), (f) use transient unstable erect positions (dance, kicking and fighting), (g) body height that makes falls injurious, (h) stiff gait walking, and (i) endurance running. Underlying these novelties, I conjecture, is a species specific human vertical balance faculty. This faculty synchronizes any action with a skeletomuscular adjustment that corrects its potential destabilizing impact upon the projection of the body's center of mass over its foot support. The balance faculty depends upon internal models of the erect vertical body's geometrical relationship (and its deviations) to its support base. Due to the situation that humans are obligate erect terrestrial animals, two frameworks - the body- and gravity-defined frameworks - are in constant alignment in the vertical z-axis. This alignment allows human balance to adapt egocentric body cognitions to detect body deviations from the gravitational vertical. This link between human balance and the processing of geometrical orientation, I propose, accounts for the close link between balance and spatial cognition found in the cerebral cortex. I argue that cortical areas processing the spatial and other cognitions needed to enable vertical balance was an important reason for brain size expansion of Homo erectus. A novel

  16. Mechanics and energetics of load carriage during human walking

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Tzu-wei P.; Kuo, Arthur D.

    2014-01-01

    Although humans clearly expend more energy to walk with an extra load, it is unclear what biomechanical mechanisms contribute to that increase. One possible contribution is the mechanical work performed on the body center of mass (COM), which simple models predict should increase linearly with added mass. The work should be performed primarily by the lower extremity joints, although in unknown distribution, and cost a proportionate amount of metabolic energy. We therefore tested normal adults (N=8) walking at constant speed (1.25 m s−1) with varying backpack loads up to 40% of body weight. We measured mechanical work (both performed on the COM and joint work from inverse dynamics), as well as metabolic energy expenditure through respirometry. Both measures of work were found to increase approximately linearly with carried load, with COM work rate increasing by approximately 1.40 W for each 1 kg of additional load. The joints all contributed work, but the greatest increase in positive work was attributable to the ankle during push-off (45–60% of stride time) and the knee in the rebound after collision (12–30% stride). The hip performed increasing amounts of negative work, near the end of stance. Rate of metabolic energy expenditure also increased approximately linearly with load, by approximately 7.6 W for each 1 kg of additional load. The ratio of the increases in work and metabolic cost yielded a relatively constant efficiency of approximately 16%. The metabolic cost not explained by work appeared to be relatively constant with load and did not exhibit a particular trend. Most of the increasing cost for carrying a load appears to be explained by positive mechanical work, especially about the ankle and knee, with both work and metabolic cost increasing nearly linearly with added mass. PMID:24198268

  17. Adaptation mechanism of interlimb coordination in human split-belt treadmill walking through learning of foot contact timing: a robotics study.

    PubMed

    Fujiki, Soichiro; Aoi, Shinya; Funato, Tetsuro; Tomita, Nozomi; Senda, Kei; Tsuchiya, Kazuo

    2015-09-01

    Human walking behaviour adaptation strategies have previously been examined using split-belt treadmills, which have two parallel independently controlled belts. In such human split-belt treadmill walking, two types of adaptations have been identified: early and late. Early-type adaptations appear as rapid changes in interlimb and intralimb coordination activities when the belt speeds of the treadmill change between tied (same speed for both belts) and split-belt (different speeds for each belt) configurations. By contrast, late-type adaptations occur after the early-type adaptations as a gradual change and only involve interlimb coordination. Furthermore, interlimb coordination shows after-effects that are related to these adaptations. It has been suggested that these adaptations are governed primarily by the spinal cord and cerebellum, but the underlying mechanism remains unclear. Because various physiological findings suggest that foot contact timing is crucial to adaptive locomotion, this paper reports on the development of a two-layered control model for walking composed of spinal and cerebellar models, and on its use as the focus of our control model. The spinal model generates rhythmic motor commands using an oscillator network based on a central pattern generator and modulates the commands formulated in immediate response to foot contact, while the cerebellar model modifies motor commands through learning based on error information related to differences between the predicted and actual foot contact timings of each leg. We investigated adaptive behaviour and its mechanism by split-belt treadmill walking experiments using both computer simulations and an experimental bipedal robot. Our results showed that the robot exhibited rapid changes in interlimb and intralimb coordination that were similar to the early-type adaptations observed in humans. In addition, despite the lack of direct interlimb coordination control, gradual changes and after-effects in the

  18. Adaptation mechanism of interlimb coordination in human split-belt treadmill walking through learning of foot contact timing: a robotics study

    PubMed Central

    Fujiki, Soichiro; Aoi, Shinya; Funato, Tetsuro; Tomita, Nozomi; Senda, Kei; Tsuchiya, Kazuo

    2015-01-01

    Human walking behaviour adaptation strategies have previously been examined using split-belt treadmills, which have two parallel independently controlled belts. In such human split-belt treadmill walking, two types of adaptations have been identified: early and late. Early-type adaptations appear as rapid changes in interlimb and intralimb coordination activities when the belt speeds of the treadmill change between tied (same speed for both belts) and split-belt (different speeds for each belt) configurations. By contrast, late-type adaptations occur after the early-type adaptations as a gradual change and only involve interlimb coordination. Furthermore, interlimb coordination shows after-effects that are related to these adaptations. It has been suggested that these adaptations are governed primarily by the spinal cord and cerebellum, but the underlying mechanism remains unclear. Because various physiological findings suggest that foot contact timing is crucial to adaptive locomotion, this paper reports on the development of a two-layered control model for walking composed of spinal and cerebellar models, and on its use as the focus of our control model. The spinal model generates rhythmic motor commands using an oscillator network based on a central pattern generator and modulates the commands formulated in immediate response to foot contact, while the cerebellar model modifies motor commands through learning based on error information related to differences between the predicted and actual foot contact timings of each leg. We investigated adaptive behaviour and its mechanism by split-belt treadmill walking experiments using both computer simulations and an experimental bipedal robot. Our results showed that the robot exhibited rapid changes in interlimb and intralimb coordination that were similar to the early-type adaptations observed in humans. In addition, despite the lack of direct interlimb coordination control, gradual changes and after-effects in the

  19. Biped walking robot based on a 2-UPU+2-UU parallel mechanism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miao, Zhihuai; Yao, Yan'an; Kong, Xianwen

    2014-03-01

    Existing biped robots mainly fall into two categories: robots with left and right feet and robots with upper and lower feet. The load carrying capability of a biped robot is quite limited since the two feet of a walking robot supports the robot alternatively during walking. To improve the load carrying capability, a novel biped walking robot is proposed based on a 2-UPU+2-UU parallel mechanism. The biped walking robot is composed of two identical platforms(feet) and four limbs, including two UPU(universal-prismatic-universal serial chain) limbs and two UU limbs. To enhance its terrain adaptability like articulated vehicles, the two feet of the biped walking robot are designed as two vehicles in detail. The conditions that the geometric parameters of the feet must satisfy are discussed. The degrees-of-freedom of the mechanism is analyzed by using screw theory. Gait analysis, kinematic analysis and stability analysis of the mechanism are carried out to verify the structural design parameters. The simulation results validate the feasibility of walking on rugged terrain. Experiments with a physical prototype show that the novel biped walking robot can walk stably on smooth terrain. Due to its unique feet design and high stiffness, the biped walking robot may adapt to rugged terrain and is suitable for load-carrying.

  20. Automaticity of walking: functional significance, mechanisms, measurement and rehabilitation strategies

    PubMed Central

    Clark, David J.

    2015-01-01

    Automaticity is a hallmark feature of walking in adults who are healthy and well-functioning. In the context of walking, “automaticity” refers to the ability of the nervous system to successfully control typical steady state walking with minimal use of attention-demanding executive control resources. Converging lines of evidence indicate that walking deficits and disorders are characterized in part by a shift in the locomotor control strategy from healthy automaticity to compensatory executive control. This is potentially detrimental to walking performance, as an executive control strategy is not optimized for locomotor control. Furthermore, it places excessive demands on a limited pool of executive reserves. The result is compromised ability to perform basic and complex walking tasks and heightened risk for adverse mobility outcomes including falls. Strategies for rehabilitation of automaticity are not well defined, which is due to both a lack of systematic research into the causes of impaired automaticity and to a lack of robust neurophysiological assessments by which to gauge automaticity. These gaps in knowledge are concerning given the serious functional implications of compromised automaticity. Therefore, the objective of this article is to advance the science of automaticity of walking by consolidating evidence and identifying gaps in knowledge regarding: (a) functional significance of automaticity; (b) neurophysiology of automaticity; (c) measurement of automaticity; (d) mechanistic factors that compromise automaticity; and (e) strategies for rehabilitation of automaticity. PMID:25999838

  1. Foramen magnum position in bipedal mammals.

    PubMed

    Russo, Gabrielle A; Kirk, E Christopher

    2013-11-01

    The anterior position of the human foramen magnum is often explained as an adaptation for maintaining balance of the head atop the cervical vertebral column during bipedalism and the assumption of orthograde trunk postures. Accordingly, the relative placement of the foramen magnum on the basicranium has been used to infer bipedal locomotion and hominin status for a number of Mio-Pliocene fossil taxa. Nonetheless, previous studies have struggled to validate the functional link between foramen magnum position and bipedal locomotion. Here, we test the hypothesis that an anteriorly positioned foramen magnum is related to bipedalism through a comparison of basicranial anatomy between bipeds and quadrupeds from three mammalian clades: marsupials, rodents and primates. Additionally, we examine whether strepsirrhine primates that habitually assume orthograde trunk postures exhibit more anteriorly positioned foramina magna compared with non-orthograde strepsirrhines. Our comparative data reveal that bipedal marsupials and rodents have foramina magna that are more anteriorly located than those of quadrupedal close relatives. The foramen magnum is also situated more anteriorly in orthograde strepsirrhines than in pronograde or antipronograde strepsirrhines. Among the primates sampled, humans exhibit the most anteriorly positioned foramina magna. The results of this analysis support the utility of foramen magnum position as an indicator of bipedal locomotion in fossil hominins. PMID:24055116

  2. Inefficient use of inverted pendulum mechanism during quadrupedal walking in the Japanese macaque.

    PubMed

    Ogihara, Naomichi; Makishima, Haruyuki; Hirasaki, Eishi; Nakatsukasa, Masato

    2012-01-01

    In animal walking, the gravitational potential and kinetic energy of the center of mass (COM) fluctuates out-of-phase to reduce the energetic cost of locomotion via an inverted pendulum mechanism, and, in canine quadrupedal walking, up to 70% of the mechanical energy can be recovered. However, the rate of energy recovery for quadrupedal walking in primates has been reported to be comparatively lower. The present study analyzed fluctuations in the potential and kinetic energy of the COM during quadrupedal walking in the Japanese macaque to clarify the mechanisms underlying this inefficient utilization of the inverted pendulum mechanism in primates. Monkeys walked on a wooden walkway at a self-selected speed, and ground reaction forces were measured, using a force platform, to calculate patterns of mechanical energy fluctuation and rates of energy recovery. Our results demonstrated that rates of energy recovery for quadrupedal walking in Japanese macaques were approximately 30-50%, much smaller than those reported for dogs. Comparisons of the patterns of mechanical energy fluctuation suggested that the potential and kinetic energies oscillated relatively more in-phase, and amplitudes did not attain near equality during quadrupedal walking in Japanese macaques, possibly because of greater weight support (reaction force) of the hindlimbs and more protracted forelimbs at touchdown in the Japanese macaque, two of the three commonly accepted locomotor characteristics distinguishing primates from non-primate mammals. PMID:21874286

  3. Muscle force production during bent-knee, bent-hip walking in humans.

    PubMed

    Foster, Adam D; Raichlen, David A; Pontzer, Herman

    2013-09-01

    Researchers have long debated the locomotor posture used by the earliest bipeds. While many agree that by 3-4 Ma (millions of years ago), hominins walked with an extended-limb human style of bipedalism, researchers are still divided over whether the earliest bipeds walked like modern humans, or walked with a more bent-knee, bent-hip (BKBH) ape-like form of locomotion. Since more flexed postures are associated with higher energy costs, reconstructing early bipedal mechanics has implications for the selection pressures that led to upright walking. The purpose of this study is to determine how modern human anatomy functions in BKBH walking to clarify the links between morphology and energy costs in different mechanical regimes. Using inverse dynamics, we calculated muscle force production at the major limb joints in humans walking in two modes, both with extended limbs and BKBH. We found that in BKBH walking, humans must produce large muscle forces at the knee to support body weight, leading to higher estimated energy costs. However, muscle forces at the hip remained similar in BKBH and extended limb walking, suggesting that anatomical adaptations for hip extension in humans do not necessarily diminish the effective mechanical advantage at the hip in more flexed postures. We conclude that the key adaptations for economical walking, regardless of joint posture, seem to center on maintaining low muscle forces at the hip, primarily by keeping low external moments at the hip. We explore the implications of these results for interpreting locomotor energetics in early hominins, including australopithecines and Ardipithecus ramidus. PMID:23928351

  4. Tuataras and salamanders show that walking and running mechanics are ancient features of tetrapod locomotion

    PubMed Central

    Reilly, Stephen M; McElroy, Eric J; Andrew Odum, R; Hornyak, Valerie A

    2006-01-01

    The lumbering locomotor behaviours of tuataras and salamanders are the best examples of quadrupedal locomotion of early terrestrial vertebrates. We show they use the same walking (out-of-phase) and running (in-phase) patterns of external mechanical energy fluctuations of the centre-of-mass known in fast moving (cursorial) animals. Thus, walking and running centre-of-mass mechanics have been a feature of tetrapods since quadrupedal locomotion emerged over 400 million years ago. When walking, these sprawling animals save external mechanical energy with the same pendular effectiveness observed in cursorial animals. However, unlike cursorial animals (that change footfall patterns and mechanics with speed), tuataras and salamanders use only diagonal couplet gaits and indifferently change from walking to running mechanics with no significant change in total mechanical energy. Thus, the change from walking to running is not related to speed and the advantage of walking versus running is unclear. Furthermore, lumbering mechanics in primitive tetrapods is reflected in having total mechanical energy driven by potential energy (rather than kinetic energy as in cursorial animals) and relative centre-of-mass displacements an order of magnitude greater than cursorial animals. Thus, large vertical displacements associated with lumbering locomotion in primitive tetrapods may preclude their ability to increase speed. PMID:16777753

  5. The pendular mechanism does not determine the optimal speed of loaded walking on gradients.

    PubMed

    Gomeñuka, Natalia Andrea; Bona, Renata Luisa; da Rosa, Rodrigo Gomes; Peyré-Tartaruga, Leonardo Alexandre

    2016-06-01

    The pendular mechanism does not act as a primary mechanism in uphill walking due to the monotonic behavior of the mechanical energies of the center of mass. Nevertheless, recent evidence shows that there is an important minimization of energy expenditure by the pendular mechanism during walking on uphill gradients. In this study, we analyzed the optimum speed (OPT) of loaded human walking and the pendulum-like determining variables (Recovery R, Instantaneous pendular re-conversion Rint, and Congruity percentage %Cong). Ten young men walked on a treadmill at five different speeds and at three different treadmill incline gradients (0, +7 and +15%), with and without a load carried in their backpacks. We used indirect calorimetry and 3D motion analysis, and all of the data were analyzed by computational algorithms. Rint increased at higher speeds and decreased with increasing gradient. R and %Cong decreased with increasing gradient and increased with speed, independent of load. Thus, energy conversion by the pendular mechanism during walking on a 15% gradient is supported, and although this mechanism can explain the maintenance of OPT at low walking speeds, the pendular mechanism does not fully explain the energy minimization at higher speeds. PMID:27017543

  6. Modeling of a bipedal robot using mutually coupled Rayleigh oscillators.

    PubMed

    Filho, Armando C de Pina; Dutra, Max S; Raptopoulos, Luciano S C

    2005-01-01

    The objective of the work presented here was the modeling of a bipedal robot using a central pattern generator (CPG) formed by a set of mutually coupled Rayleigh oscillators. We analyzed a 2D model, with the three most important determinants of gait, that performs only motions parallel to the sagittal plane. Using oscillators with integer relation of frequency, we determined the transient motion and the stable limit cycles of the network formed by the three oscillators, showing the behavior of the knee angles and the hip angle. A comparison of the plotted graphs revealed that the system provided excellent results when compared to experimental analysis. Based on the results of the study, we come to the conclusion that the use of mutually coupled Rayleigh oscillators can represent an excellent method of signal generation, allowing their application for feedback control of a walking machine. PMID:15580522

  7. Spinopelvic pathways to bipedality: why no hominids ever relied on a bent-hip–bent-knee gait

    PubMed Central

    Lovejoy, C. Owen; McCollum, Melanie A.

    2010-01-01

    Until recently, the last common ancestor of African apes and humans was presumed to resemble living chimpanzees and bonobos. This was frequently extended to their locomotor pattern leading to the presumption that knuckle-walking was a likely ancestral pattern, requiring bipedality to have emerged as a modification of their bent-hip-bent-knee gait used during erect walking. Research on the development and anatomy of the vertebral column, coupled with new revelations from the fossil record (in particular, Ardipithecus ramidus), now demonstrate that these presumptions have been in error. Reassessment of the potential pathway to early hominid bipedality now reveals an entirely novel sequence of likely morphological events leading to the emergence of upright walking. PMID:20855303

  8. Skipping vs. running as the bipedal gait of choice in hypogravity.

    PubMed

    Pavei, Gaspare; Biancardi, Carlo M; Minetti, Alberto E

    2015-07-01

    Hypogravity challenges bipedal locomotion in its common forms. However, as previously theoretically and empirically suggested, humans can rely on "skipping," a less common gait available as a functional analog (perhaps a vestigium) of quadrupedal gallop, to confidently move when gravity is much lower than on Earth. We set up a 17-m-tall cavaedium (skylight shaft) with a bungee rubber body-suspension system and a treadmill to investigate the metabolic cost and the biomechanics of low-gravity (Mars, Moon) locomotion. Although skipping is never more metabolically economical than running, the difference becomes marginal at lunar gravities, with both bouncing gaits approaching values of walking on Earth (cost ≈ 2 J · kg(-1)· m(-1)). Nonmetabolic factors may thus be allowed to dominate the choice of skipping on the Moon. On the basis of center of pressure measurements and body segments kinetics, we can speculate that these factors may include a further reduction of mechanical work to move the limbs when wearing space suits and a more effective motor control during the ground (regoliths)-boot interaction. PMID:25930029

  9. The evolution of the human pelvis: changing adaptations to bipedalism, obstetrics and thermoregulation.

    PubMed

    Gruss, Laura Tobias; Schmitt, Daniel

    2015-03-01

    The fossil record of the human pelvis reveals the selective priorities acting on hominin anatomy at different points in our evolutionary history, during which mechanical requirements for locomotion, childbirth and thermoregulation often conflicted. In our earliest upright ancestors, fundamental alterations of the pelvis compared with non-human primates facilitated bipedal walking. Further changes early in hominin evolution produced a platypelloid birth canal in a pelvis that was wide overall, with flaring ilia. This pelvic form was maintained over 3-4 Myr with only moderate changes in response to greater habitat diversity, changes in locomotor behaviour and increases in brain size. It was not until Homo sapiens evolved in Africa and the Middle East 200 000 years ago that the narrow anatomically modern pelvis with a more circular birth canal emerged. This major change appears to reflect selective pressures for further increases in neonatal brain size and for a narrow body shape associated with heat dissipation in warm environments. The advent of the modern birth canal, the shape and alignment of which require fetal rotation during birth, allowed the earliest members of our species to deal obstetrically with increases in encephalization while maintaining a narrow body to meet thermoregulatory demands and enhance locomotor performance. PMID:25602067

  10. The evolution of the human pelvis: changing adaptations to bipedalism, obstetrics and thermoregulation

    PubMed Central

    Gruss, Laura Tobias; Schmitt, Daniel

    2015-01-01

    The fossil record of the human pelvis reveals the selective priorities acting on hominin anatomy at different points in our evolutionary history, during which mechanical requirements for locomotion, childbirth and thermoregulation often conflicted. In our earliest upright ancestors, fundamental alterations of the pelvis compared with non-human primates facilitated bipedal walking. Further changes early in hominin evolution produced a platypelloid birth canal in a pelvis that was wide overall, with flaring ilia. This pelvic form was maintained over 3–4 Myr with only moderate changes in response to greater habitat diversity, changes in locomotor behaviour and increases in brain size. It was not until Homo sapiens evolved in Africa and the Middle East 200 000 years ago that the narrow anatomically modern pelvis with a more circular birth canal emerged. This major change appears to reflect selective pressures for further increases in neonatal brain size and for a narrow body shape associated with heat dissipation in warm environments. The advent of the modern birth canal, the shape and alignment of which require fetal rotation during birth, allowed the earliest members of our species to deal obstetrically with increases in encephalization while maintaining a narrow body to meet thermoregulatory demands and enhance locomotor performance. PMID:25602067

  11. The transmission efficiency of backward walking at different gradients.

    PubMed

    Minetti, A E; Ardigò, L P

    2001-07-01

    The specialized design of the bipedal system towards forward locomotion has been assessed by measuring the metabolic cost and the mechanical work of both forward and backward walking on a treadmill at seven gradients from 0 to +32%. With respect to forward locomotion, backward walking implies: (1) a higher metabolic cost particularly at level gradient, while at steeper inclines the difference decreases, (2) the same mechanical internal work despite an increased stride frequency, (3) higher mechanical external work within a gradient range from 0 to +15%, (4) lower "energy recovery", i.e. the ability to save mechanical energy by moving as an inverted pendulum, mainly in level walking, and (5) as a consequence of the above results, a decrease of the efficiency of locomotion particularly at the 0% gradient. The transmission efficiency of backward walking, relative to the forward progression, was found to be about 65% in level locomotion, while at higher gradients it increased to and was maintained at a value of about 93%. The poorer economy of level backward walking could also be explained by an impaired elastic contribution in the last part of the double contact phase, while the similarity of the two gaits on higher gradients is caused by disruption of the pendulum-like paradigm due to the trajectory geometry of the body's centre of mass progressively losing its downward portion. PMID:11510887

  12. Mechanical and neural stretch responses of the human soleus muscle at different walking speeds

    PubMed Central

    Cronin, Neil J; Ishikawa, Masaki; Grey, Michael J; af Klint, Richard; Komi, Paavo V; Avela, Janne; Sinkjaer, Thomas; Voigt, Michael

    2009-01-01

    During human walking, a sudden trip may elicit a Ia afferent fibre mediated short latency stretch reflex. The aim of this study was to investigate soleus (SOL) muscle mechanical behaviour in response to dorsiflexion perturbations, and to relate this behaviour to short latency stretch reflex responses. Twelve healthy subjects walked on a treadmill with the left leg attached to an actuator capable of rapidly dorsiflexing the ankle joint. Ultrasound was used to measure fascicle lengths in SOL during walking, and surface electromyography (EMG) was used to record muscle activation. Dorsiflexion perturbations of 6 deg were applied during mid-stance at walking speeds of 3, 4 and 5 km h−1. At each walking speed, perturbations were delivered at three different velocities (slow: ∼170 deg s−1, mid: ∼230 deg s−1, fast: ∼280 deg s−1). At 5 km h−1, fascicle stretch amplitude was 34–40% smaller and fascicle stretch velocity 22–28% slower than at 3 km h−1 in response to a constant amplitude perturbation, whilst stretch reflex amplitudes were unchanged. Changes in fascicle stretch parameters can be attributed to an increase in muscle stiffness at faster walking speeds. As stretch velocity is a potent stimulus to muscle spindles, a decrease in the velocity of fascicle stretch at faster walking speeds would be expected to decrease spindle afferent feedback and thus stretch reflex amplitudes, which did not occur. It is therefore postulated that other mechanisms, such as altered fusimotor drive, reduced pre-synaptic inhibition and/or increased descending excitatory input, acted to maintain motoneurone output as walking speed increased, preventing a decrease in short latency reflex amplitudes. PMID:19451207

  13. A wrist-walker exhibiting no "Uner Tan Syndrome": a theory for possible mechanisms of human devolution toward the atavistic walking patterns.

    PubMed

    Tan, Uner

    2007-01-01

    transition from quadrupedality to bipedality. That is, the activity of the philogenetically youngest supraspinal centers for bipedal walking responsible for suppression of the older supraspinal centers for quadrupedal gait may be interrupted at the atavistic level due to genetic and/or environmental factors. Consequently, it is assumed that these individuals prefer their natural wrist-walking to move around more quickly and efficiently. PMID:17365105

  14. The mechanics and energetics of human walking and running: a joint level perspective

    PubMed Central

    Farris, Dominic James; Sawicki, Gregory S.

    2012-01-01

    Humans walk and run at a range of speeds. While steady locomotion at a given speed requires no net mechanical work, moving faster does demand both more positive and negative mechanical work per stride. Is this increased demand met by increasing power output at all lower limb joints or just some of them? Does running rely on different joints for power output than walking? How does this contribute to the metabolic cost of locomotion? This study examined the effects of walking and running speed on lower limb joint mechanics and metabolic cost of transport in humans. Kinematic and kinetic data for 10 participants were collected for a range of walking (0.75, 1.25, 1.75, 2.0 m s−1) and running (2.0, 2.25, 2.75, 3.25 m s−1) speeds. Net metabolic power was measured by indirect calorimetry. Within each gait, there was no difference in the proportion of power contributed by each joint (hip, knee, ankle) to total power across speeds. Changing from walking to running resulted in a significant (p = 0.02) shift in power production from the hip to the ankle which may explain the higher efficiency of running at speeds above 2.0 m s−1 and shed light on a potential mechanism behind the walk–run transition. PMID:21613286

  15. Decoding bipedal locomotion from the rat sensorimotor cortex

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rigosa, J.; Panarese, A.; Dominici, N.; Friedli, L.; van den Brand, R.; Carpaneto, J.; DiGiovanna, J.; Courtine, G.; Micera, S.

    2015-10-01

    Objective. Decoding forelimb movements from the firing activity of cortical neurons has been interfaced with robotic and prosthetic systems to replace lost upper limb functions in humans. Despite the potential of this approach to improve locomotion and facilitate gait rehabilitation, decoding lower limb movement from the motor cortex has received comparatively little attention. Here, we performed experiments to identify the type and amount of information that can be decoded from neuronal ensemble activity in the hindlimb area of the rat motor cortex during bipedal locomotor tasks. Approach. Rats were trained to stand, step on a treadmill, walk overground and climb staircases in a bipedal posture. To impose this gait, the rats were secured in a robotic interface that provided support against the direction of gravity and in the mediolateral direction, but behaved transparently in the forward direction. After completion of training, rats were chronically implanted with a micro-wire array spanning the left hindlimb motor cortex to record single and multi-unit activity, and bipolar electrodes into 10 muscles of the right hindlimb to monitor electromyographic signals. Whole-body kinematics, muscle activity, and neural signals were simultaneously recorded during execution of the trained tasks over multiple days of testing. Hindlimb kinematics, muscle activity, gait phases, and locomotor tasks were decoded using offline classification algorithms. Main results. We found that the stance and swing phases of gait and the locomotor tasks were detected with accuracies as robust as 90% in all rats. Decoded hindlimb kinematics and muscle activity exhibited a larger variability across rats and tasks. Significance. Our study shows that the rodent motor cortex contains useful information for lower limb neuroprosthetic development. However, brain-machine interfaces estimating gait phases or locomotor behaviors, instead of continuous variables such as limb joint positions or speeds

  16. Numerical bifurcation analysis of the bipedal spring-mass model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Merker, Andreas; Kaiser, Dieter; Hermann, Martin

    2015-01-01

    The spring-mass model and its numerous extensions are currently one of the best candidates for templates of human and animal locomotion. However, with increasing complexity, their applications can become very time-consuming. In this paper, we present an approach that is based on the calculation of bifurcations in the bipedal spring-mass model for walking. Since the bifurcations limit the region of stable walking, locomotion can be studied by computing the corresponding boundaries. Originally, the model was implemented as a hybrid dynamical system. Our new approach consists of the transformation of the series of initial value problems on different intervals into a single boundary value problem. Using this technique, discontinuities can be avoided and sophisticated numerical methods for studying parametrized nonlinear boundary value problems can be applied. Thus, appropriate extended systems are used to compute transcritical and period-doubling bifurcation points as well as turning points. We show that the resulting boundary value problems can be solved by the simple shooting method with sufficient accuracy, making the application of the more extensive multiple shooting superfluous. The proposed approach is fast, robust to numerical perturbations and allows determining complete manifolds of periodic solutions of the original problem.

  17. Reading from a Head-Fixed Display during Walking: Adverse Effects of Gaze Stabilization Mechanisms

    PubMed Central

    Borg, Olivier; Casanova, Remy; Bootsma, Reinoud J.

    2015-01-01

    Reading performance during standing and walking was assessed for information presented on earth-fixed and head-fixed displays by determining the minimal duration during which a numerical time stimulus needed to be presented for 50% correct naming answers. Reading from the earth-fixed display was comparable during standing and walking, with optimal performance being attained for visual character sizes in the range of 0.2° to 1°. Reading from the head-fixed display was impaired for small (0.2-0.3°) and large (5°) visual character sizes, especially during walking. Analysis of head and eye movements demonstrated that retinal slip was larger during walking than during standing, but remained within the functional acuity range when reading from the earth-fixed display. The detrimental effects on performance of reading from the head-fixed display during walking could be attributed to loss of acuity resulting from large retinal slip. Because walking activated the angular vestibulo-ocular reflex, the resulting compensatory eye movements acted to stabilize gaze on the information presented on the earth-fixed display but destabilized gaze from the information presented on the head-fixed display. We conclude that the gaze stabilization mechanisms that normally allow visual performance to be maintained during physical activity adversely affect reading performance when the information is presented on a display attached to the head. PMID:26053622

  18. Mechanical energy fluctuations during walking of healthy and ACL-reconstructed subjects.

    PubMed

    Winiarski, Sławomir

    2008-01-01

    In a clinical gait analysis, mechanical energy is the gait variable which can validate the energetic state of the disorder of patient's movement. The purpose of this study was to explore the possibilities of employing the total mechanical energy in estimating the mechanical cost of transport in normal and pathological human gait. One of the basic methods of determining mechanical energy (inverted pendulum model) was used to estimate the external mechanical work performed by the walking subjects based on externally observable measurements. Gait data was collected for healthy able-bodied men and patients after ACL reconstruction during physiotherapy process who demonstrate larger lateral center of gravity (CoG) excursions during gait. Based on predictions of the body's CoG trajectory during walking, algorithms were developed to determine the changes in components of total mechanical energy in normal and pathological gait. The utility of calculating mechanical energy in a patient population is questioned. PMID:19031999

  19. Giant Galapagos tortoises walk without inverted pendulum mechanical-energy exchange.

    PubMed

    Zani, Peter A; Gottschall, Jinger S; Kram, Rodger

    2005-04-01

    Animals must perform mechanical work during walking, but most conserve substantial mechanical energy via an inverted-pendulum-like mechanism of energy recovery in which fluctuations of kinetic energy (KE) and gravitational potential energy (GPE) are of similar magnitude and 180 degrees out of phase. The greatest energy recovery typically occurs at intermediate speeds. Tortoises are known for their slow speeds, which we anticipated would lead to small fluctuations in KE. To have an effective exchange of mechanical energy using the inverted-pendulum mechanism, tortoises would need to walk with only small changes in GPE corresponding to vertical center-of-mass (COM) fluctuations of < 0.5 mm. Thus, we hypothesized that giant Galapagos tortoises would not conserve substantial mechanical energy using the inverted-pendulum mechanism. We studied five adult giant Galapagos tortoises Geochelone elephantopus (mean mass=142 kg; range= 103-196 kg). Walking speed was extremely slow (0.16+/-0.052 m s(-1); mean +/- 1 s.d.). The fluctuations in kinetic energy (8.1+/-3.98 J stride(-1)) were only one-third as large as the fluctuations in gravitational potential energy (22.7+/-8.04 J stride(-1)). In addition, these energies fluctuated nearly randomly and were only sporadically out of phase. Because of the dissimilar amplitudes and inconsistent phase relationships of these energies, tortoises conserved little mechanical energy during steady walking, recovering only 29.8+/-3.77% of the mechanical energy (range=13-52%). Thus, giant Galapagos tortoises do not utilize effectively an inverted-pendulum mechanism of energy conservation. Nonetheless, the mass-specific external mechanical work required per distance (0.41+/-0.092 J kg(-1) m(-1)) was not different from most other legged animals. Other turtle species use less than half as much metabolic energy to walk as other terrestrial animals of similar mass. It is not yet known if Galapagos tortoises are economical walkers. Nevertheless

  20. Mechanical Work Performed by the Individual Legs during Uphill and Downhill Walking

    PubMed Central

    Franz, Jason R.; Lyddon, Nicholas E.; Kram, Rodger

    2011-01-01

    Previous studies of the mechanical work performed during uphill and downhill walking have neglected the simultaneous negative and positive work performed by the leading and trailing legs during double support. Our goal was to quantify the mechanical work performed by the individual legs across a range of uphill and downhill grades. We hypothesized that during double support, 1) with steeper uphill grade, the negative work performed by the leading leg would become negligible and the trailing leg would perform progressively greater positive work to raise the center of mass (CoM), and 2) with steeper downhill grade, the leading leg would perform progressively greater negative work to lower the CoM and the positive work performed by the trailing leg would become negligible. 11 healthy young adults (6M/5F, 71.0 ± 12.3 kg) walked at 1.25 m/s on a dual-belt force-measuring treadmill at seven grades (0, ±3, ±6, ±9°). We collected three-dimensional ground reaction forces (GRFs) and used the individual limbs method to calculate the mechanical work performed by each leg. As hypothesized, the trailing leg performed progressively greater positive work with steeper uphill grade, and the leading leg performed progressively greater negative work with steeper downhill grade (p<0.005). To our surprise, unlike level-ground walking, during double support the leading leg performed considerable positive work when walking uphill and the trailing leg performed considerable negative work when walking downhill (p<0.005). To understand how humans walk uphill and downhill, it is important to consider these revealing biomechanical aspects of individual leg function and interaction during double support. PMID:22099148

  1. The correlation between metabolic and individual leg mechanical power during walking at different slopes and velocities

    PubMed Central

    Jeffers, Jana R.; Auyang, Arick G.; Grabowski, Alena M.

    2016-01-01

    During level-ground walking, mechanical work from each leg is required to redirect and accelerate the center of mass. Previous studies show a linear correlation between net metabolic power and the rate of step-to-step transition work during level-ground walking with changing step lengths. However, correlations between metabolic power and individual leg power during step-to-step transitions while walking on uphill/downhill slopes and at different velocities are not known. This basic understanding of these relationships between metabolic demands and biomechanical tasks can provide important information for design and control of biomimetic assistive devices such as leg prostheses and orthoses. Thus, we compared changes in metabolic power and mechanical power during step-to-step transitions while 19 subjects walked at seven slopes (0°, +/−3°, +/−6°, and +/−9°) and three velocities (1.00, 1.25, and 1.50 m/s). A quadratic model explained more of the variance (R2=0.58–0.61) than a linear model (R2=0.37–0.52) between metabolic power and individual leg mechanical power during step-to-step transitions across all velocities. A quadratic model explained more of the variance (R2=0.57–0.76) than a linear model (R2=0.52–0.59) between metabolic power and individual leg mechanical power during step-to-step transitions at each velocity for all slopes, and explained more of the variance (R2=0.12–0.54) than a linear model (R2=0.07–0.49) at each slope for all velocities. Our results suggest that it is important to consider the mechanical function of each leg in the design of biomimetic assistive devices aimed at reducing metabolic costs when walking at different slopes and velocities. PMID:25959113

  2. Mechanical and energetic consequences of reduced ankle plantar-flexion in human walking.

    PubMed

    Huang, Tzu-wei P; Shorter, Kenneth A; Adamczyk, Peter G; Kuo, Arthur D

    2015-11-01

    The human ankle produces a large burst of 'push-off' mechanical power late in the stance phase of walking, reduction of which leads to considerably poorer energy economy. It is, however, uncertain whether the energetic penalty results from poorer efficiency when the other leg joints substitute for the ankle's push-off work, or from a higher overall demand for work due to some fundamental feature of push-off. Here, we show that greater metabolic energy expenditure is indeed explained by a greater demand for work. This is predicted by a simple model of walking on pendulum-like legs, because proper push-off reduces collision losses from the leading leg. We tested this by experimentally restricting ankle push-off bilaterally in healthy adults (N=8) walking on a treadmill at 1.4 m s(-1), using ankle-foot orthoses with steel cables limiting motion. These produced up to ∼50% reduction in ankle push-off power and work, resulting in up to ∼50% greater net metabolic power expenditure to walk at the same speed. For each 1 J reduction in ankle work, we observed 0.6 J more dissipative collision work by the other leg, 1.3 J more positive work from the leg joints overall, and 3.94 J more metabolic energy expended. Loss of ankle push-off required more positive work elsewhere to maintain walking speed; this additional work was performed by the knee, apparently at reasonably high efficiency. Ankle push-off may contribute to walking economy by reducing dissipative collision losses and thus overall work demand. PMID:26385330

  3. Mechanical and energetic consequences of rolling foot shape in human walking.

    PubMed

    Adamczyk, Peter G; Kuo, Arthur D

    2013-07-15

    During human walking, the center of pressure under the foot progresses forward smoothly during each step, creating a wheel-like motion between the leg and the ground. This rolling motion might appear to aid walking economy, but the mechanisms that may lead to such a benefit are unclear, as the leg is not literally a wheel. We propose that there is indeed a benefit, but less from rolling than from smoother transitions between pendulum-like stance legs. The velocity of the body center of mass (COM) must be redirected in that transition, and a longer foot reduces the work required for the redirection. Here we develop a dynamic walking model that predicts different effects from altering foot length as opposed to foot radius, and test it by attaching rigid, arc-like foot bottoms to humans walking with fixed ankles. The model suggests that smooth rolling is relatively insensitive to arc radius, whereas work for the step-to-step transition decreases approximately quadratically with foot length. We measured the separate effects of arc-foot length and radius on COM velocity fluctuations, work performed by the legs and metabolic cost. Experimental data (N=8) show that foot length indeed has much greater effect on both the mechanical work of the step-to-step transition (23% variation, P=0.04) and the overall energetic cost of walking (6%, P=0.03) than foot radius (no significant effect, P>0.05). We found the minimum metabolic energy cost for an arc foot length of approximately 29% of leg length, roughly comparable to human foot length. Our results suggest that the foot's apparently wheel-like action derives less benefit from rolling per se than from reduced work to redirect the body COM. PMID:23580717

  4. Mechanical and energetic consequences of rolling foot shape in human walking

    PubMed Central

    Adamczyk, Peter G.; Kuo, Arthur D.

    2013-01-01

    SUMMARY During human walking, the center of pressure under the foot progresses forward smoothly during each step, creating a wheel-like motion between the leg and the ground. This rolling motion might appear to aid walking economy, but the mechanisms that may lead to such a benefit are unclear, as the leg is not literally a wheel. We propose that there is indeed a benefit, but less from rolling than from smoother transitions between pendulum-like stance legs. The velocity of the body center of mass (COM) must be redirected in that transition, and a longer foot reduces the work required for the redirection. Here we develop a dynamic walking model that predicts different effects from altering foot length as opposed to foot radius, and test it by attaching rigid, arc-like foot bottoms to humans walking with fixed ankles. The model suggests that smooth rolling is relatively insensitive to arc radius, whereas work for the step-to-step transition decreases approximately quadratically with foot length. We measured the separate effects of arc-foot length and radius on COM velocity fluctuations, work performed by the legs and metabolic cost. Experimental data (N=8) show that foot length indeed has much greater effect on both the mechanical work of the step-to-step transition (23% variation, P=0.04) and the overall energetic cost of walking (6%, P=0.03) than foot radius (no significant effect, P>0.05). We found the minimum metabolic energy cost for an arc foot length of approximately 29% of leg length, roughly comparable to human foot length. Our results suggest that the foot's apparently wheel-like action derives less benefit from rolling per se than from reduced work to redirect the body COM. PMID:23580717

  5. Dynamic stability of human walking in visually and mechanically destabilizing environments.

    PubMed

    McAndrew, Patricia M; Wilken, Jason M; Dingwell, Jonathan B

    2011-02-24

    Understanding how humans remain stable during challenging locomotor activities is critical to developing effective tests to diagnose patients with increased fall risk. This study determined if different continuous low-amplitude perturbations would induce specific measureable changes in measures of dynamic stability during walking. We applied continuous pseudo-random oscillations of either the visual scene or support surface in either the anterior-posterior or mediolateral directions to subjects walking in a virtual environment with speed-matched optic flow. Floquet multipliers and short-term local divergence exponents both increased (indicating greater instability) during perturbed walking. These responses were generally much stronger for body movements occurring in the same directions as the applied perturbations. Likewise, subjects were more sensitive to both visual and mechanical perturbations applied in the mediolateral direction than to those applied in the anterior-posterior direction, consistent with previous experiments and theoretical predictions. These responses were likewise consistent with subjects' anecdotal perceptions of which perturbation conditions were most challenging. Contrary to the Floquet multipliers and short-term local divergence exponents, which both increased, long-term local divergence exponents decreased during perturbed walking. However, this was consistent with specific changes in the mean log divergence curves, which indicated that subjects' movements reached their maximum local divergence limits more quickly during perturbed walking. Overall, the Floquet multipliers were less sensitive, but reflected greater specificity in their responses to the different perturbation conditions. Conversely, the short-term local divergence exponents exhibited less specificity in their responses, but were more sensitive measures of instability in general. PMID:21094944

  6. Mechanical efficiency of limb swing during walking and running in guinea fowl (Numida meleagris)

    PubMed Central

    Rubenson, Jonas; Marsh, Richard L.

    2009-01-01

    Understanding the mechanical determinants of the energy cost of limb swing is crucial for refining our models of locomotor energetics, as well as improving treatments for those suffering from impaired limb-swing mechanics. In this study, we use guinea fowl (Numida meleagris) as a model to explore whether mechanical work at the joints explains limb-swing energy use by combining inverse dynamic modeling and muscle-specific energetics from blood flow measurements. We found that the overall efficiencies of the limb swing increased markedly from walking (3%) to fast running (17%) and are well below the usually accepted maximum efficiency of muscle, except at the fastest speeds recorded. The estimated efficiency of a single muscle used during ankle flexion (tibialis cranialis) parallels that of the total limb-swing efficiency (3% walking, 15% fast running). Taken together, these findings do not support the hypothesis that joint work is the major determinant of limb-swing energy use across the animal's speed range and warn against making simple predictions of energy use based on joint mechanical work. To understand limb-swing energy use, mechanical functions other than accelerating the limb segments need to be explored, including isometric force production and muscle work arising from active and passive antagonist muscle forces. PMID:19228989

  7. The relationships between muscle, external, internal and joint mechanical work during normal walking

    PubMed Central

    Sasaki, Kotaro; Neptune, Richard R.; Kautz, Steven A.

    2009-01-01

    Summary Muscle mechanical work is an important biomechanical quantity in human movement analyses and has been estimated using different quantities including external, internal and joint work. The goal of this study was to investigate the relationships between these traditionally used estimates of mechanical work in human walking and to assess whether they can be used as accurate estimates of musculotendon and/or muscle fiber work. A muscle-actuated forward dynamics walking simulation was generated to quantify each of the mechanical work measures. Total joint work (i.e. the time integral of absolute joint power over a full gait cycle) was found to underestimate total musculotendon work due to agonist–antagonist co-contractions, despite the effect of biarticular muscle work and passive joint work, which acted to decrease the underestimation. We did find that when the net passive joint work over the gait cycle is negligible, net joint work (i.e. the time integral of net joint power) was comparable to the net musculotendon work (and net muscle fiber work because net tendon work is zero over a complete gait cycle). Thus, during walking conditions when passive joint work is negligible, net joint work may be used as an estimate of net muscle work. Neither total external nor total internal work (nor their sum) provided a reasonable estimate of total musculotendon work. We conclude that joint work is limited in its ability to estimate musculotendon work, and that external and internal work should not be used as an estimation of musculotendon work. PMID:19218526

  8. Random walks along the streets and canals in compact cities: Spectral analysis, dynamical modularity, information, and statistical mechanics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Volchenkov, D.; Blanchard, Ph.

    2007-02-01

    Different models of random walks on the dual graphs of compact urban structures are considered. Analysis of access times between streets helps to detect the city modularity. The statistical mechanics approach to the ensembles of lazy random walkers is developed. The complexity of city modularity can be measured by an informationlike parameter which plays the role of an individual fingerprint of Genius loci. Global structural properties of a city can be characterized by the thermodynamic parameters calculated in the random walk problem.

  9. Step Length Asymmetry is Representative of Compensatory Mechanisms Used in Post-Stroke Hemiparetic Walking

    PubMed Central

    Allen, Jessica L.; Kautz, Steven A.; Neptune, Richard R.

    2011-01-01

    Post-stroke hemiparetic subjects walk with asymmetrical step lengths that are highly variable between subjects and may be indicative of the underlying impairments and compensatory mechanisms used. The goal of this study was to determine if post-stroke hemiparetic subjects grouped by step length asymmetry have similar abnormal walking biomechanics compared to non-impaired walkers. Kinematic and ground reaction force data were recorded from 55 hemiparetic subjects walking at their self-selected speed and 21 age and speed-matched non-impaired control subjects. Hemiparetic subjects were grouped by paretic step ratio, which was calculated as the paretic step-length divided by the sum of paretic and nonparetic step-lengths, into high (>0.535), symmetric (0.535–0.465) and low (<0.465) groups. Non-parametric Wilcoxin signed-rank tests were used to test for differences in joint kinetic measures between hemiparetic groups and speed-matched control subjects during late single-leg stance and pre-swing. The paretic leg ankle moment impulse was reduced in all hemiparetic subjects regardless of their paretic step ratio. The high group had increased nonparetic leg ankle plantarflexor and knee extensor moment impulses, the symmetric group had increased hip flexor moment impulses on both the paretic and nonparetic leg and the low group had no additional significant differences in joint moment impulses. These results suggest that the direction of asymmetry can be used to identify both the degree of paretic plantarflexor impairment and the compensatory mechanisms used by post-stroke hemiparetic subjects. PMID:21316240

  10. Compliant bipedal model with the center of pressure excursion associated with oscillatory behavior of the center of mass reproduces the human gait dynamics.

    PubMed

    Jung, Chang Keun; Park, Sukyung

    2014-01-01

    Although the compliant bipedal model could reproduce qualitative ground reaction force (GRF) of human walking, the model with a fixed pivot showed overestimations in stance leg rotation and the ratio of horizontal to vertical GRF. The human walking data showed a continuous forward progression of the center of pressure (CoP) during the stance phase and the suspension of the CoP near the forefoot before the onset of step transition. To better describe human gait dynamics with a minimal expense of model complexity, we proposed a compliant bipedal model with the accelerated pivot which associated the CoP excursion with the oscillatory behavior of the center of mass (CoM) with the existing simulation parameter and leg stiffness. Owing to the pivot acceleration defined to emulate human CoP profile, the arrival of the CoP at the limit of the stance foot over the single stance duration initiated the step-to-step transition. The proposed model showed an improved match of walking data. As the forward motion of CoM during single stance was partly accounted by forward pivot translation, the previously overestimated rotation of the stance leg was reduced and the corresponding horizontal GRF became closer to human data. The walking solutions of the model ranged over higher speed ranges (~1.7 m/s) than those of the fixed pivoted compliant bipedal model (~1.5m/s) and exhibited other gait parameters, such as touchdown angle, step length and step frequency, comparable to the experimental observations. The good matches between the model and experimental GRF data imply that the continuous pivot acceleration associated with CoM oscillatory behavior could serve as a useful framework of bipedal model. PMID:24161797

  11. Characterization of the mechanical properties of backpacks and their influence on the energetics of walking.

    PubMed

    Foissac, Matthieu; Millet, Guillaume Y; Geyssant, André; Freychat, Philippe; Belli, Alain

    2009-01-19

    The objectives of the experiment were (i) to characterize the mechanical properties of backpacks and (ii) to study the influence of a flexible backpack on the energetics and kinematics of walking. Twelve subjects walked at different speeds on a treadmill with each of two backpacks loaded with 25% bodyweight, with either a rigid or a flexible link between the body attachment and the suspended loads. A single degree of freedom linear model of the link between the pack and the trunk was used to calculate the stiffness and damping coefficient of the two backpacks. The oxygen consumption (VO2) and the vertical acceleration of both the backpack and trunk were measured. The vertical excursion of the pack given by the model was significantly correlated with that actually measured (R=0.87, p<0.001). At 3.7 and 4.5 km h(-1) the flexible pack induced lower acceleration peaks (respectively -22% and -8%; p<0.05) and tended to reduce VO2 (p=0.055 at 4.5 km h(-1)) compared with the rigid one. At 5.2 and 6 km h(-1) both the accelerative forces and VO2 increased with the flexible pack (p<0.05) mainly because of the high vertical movement of the pack. It was concluded that a simple model can be used to predict the vertical excursion of the pack and that a flexible backpack can provide energetic benefits when its oscillations are nearly in phase with those of the trunk. However, any resonance effect can lead to a modified walking pattern and an increased metabolic cost. PMID:19062021

  12. Biased motion and molecular motor properties of bipedal spiders

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Samii, Laleh; Linke, Heiner; Zuckermann, Martin J.; Forde, Nancy R.

    2010-02-01

    Molecular spiders are synthetic molecular motors featuring multiple legs that each can interact with a substrate through binding and cleavage. Experimental studies suggest the motion of the spider in a matrix is biased toward uncleaved substrates and that spider properties such as processivity can be altered by changing the binding strength of the legs to substrate [R. Pei, S. K. Taylor, D. Stefanovic, S. Rudchenko, T. E. Mitchell, and M. N. Stojanovic, J. Am. Chem. Soc. 128, 12693 (2006)]. We investigate the origin of biased motion and molecular motor properties of bipedal spiders using Monte Carlo simulations. Our simulations combine a realistic chemical kinetic model, hand-over-hand or inchworm modes of stepping, and the use of a one-dimensional track. We find that stronger binding to substrate, cleavage and spider detachment from the track are contributing mechanisms to population bias. We investigate the contributions of stepping mechanism to speed, randomness parameter, processivity, coupling, and efficiency, and comment on how these molecular motor properties can be altered by changing experimentally tunable kinetic parameters.

  13. Mechanics of slope walking in the cat: quantification of muscle load, length change, and ankle extensor EMG patterns.

    PubMed

    Gregor, Robert J; Smith, D Webb; Prilutsky, Boris I

    2006-03-01

    Unexpected changes in flexor-extensor muscle activation synergies during slope walking in the cat have been explained previously by 1) a reorganization of circuitry in the central pattern generator or 2) altered muscle and cutaneous afferent inputs to motoneurons that modulate their activity. The aim of this study was to quantify muscle length changes, muscle loads, and ground reaction forces during downslope, level, and upslope walking in the cat. These mechanical variables are related to feedback from muscle length and force, and paw pad cutaneous afferents, and differences in these variables between the slope walking conditions could provide additional insight into possible mechanisms of the muscle control. Kinematics, ground reaction forces, and EMG were recorded while cats walked on a walkway in three conditions: downslope (-26.6 deg), level (0 deg), and upslope (26.6 deg). The resultant joint moments were calculated using inverse dynamics analysis; length and velocity of major hindlimb muscle-tendon units (MTUs) were calculated using a geometric model and calculated joint angles. It was found that during stance in downslope walking, the MTU stretch of ankle and knee extensors and MTU peak stretch velocities of ankle extensors were significantly greater than those in level or upslope conditions, whereas forces applied to the paw pad and peaks of ankle and hip extensor moments were significantly smaller. The opposite was true for upslope walking. It was suggested that these differences between upslope and downslope walking might affect motion-dependent feedback, resulting in muscle activity changes recorded here or reported in the literature. PMID:16207777

  14. Mechanics and energetics of step-to-step transitions isolated from human walking.

    PubMed

    Soo, Caroline H; Donelan, J Maxwell

    2010-12-15

    We isolated step-to-step transitions from other contributors to walking mechanics using a cyclical rocking task and then examined the contribution of individual joints to the total work required to redirect the velocity of the center of mass (COM). Nine participants were instructed to rock backward and forward in the sagittal plane, eliminating the need to swing the legs and progress forward. To systematically increase the required work, we increased step length from 60 to 100% of leg length, keeping rocking frequency constant. The individual limbs method quantified the COM work and the joint power method apportioned the COM work among its various sources. As predicted by a physics-based model, we found that work in rocking was performed mainly during the step-to-step transitions and increased strongly with step length. We also found that increases in the average COM work rate exacted a proportional metabolic cost. The similar patterns of COM work and COM work rate during rocking and walking support the use of rocking to isolate the mechanics of step-to-step transitions. We found that the ankle was the main joint contributing to the positive work required to redirect the COM velocity during forward rocking. At the longest length, it accounted for 88% of the work performed by the trailing leg joints. Interestingly, the summed contribution of ankle, knee and hip joint work accounted for only 39% of the front leg negative COM work during the forward transition, suggesting that most of the collision work is performed by passive tissue. PMID:21113008

  15. Kinematics and center of mass mechanics during terrestrial locomotion in northern lapwings (Vanellus vanellus, Charadriiformes).

    PubMed

    Nyakatura, J A; Andrada, E; Grimm, N; Weise, H; Fischer, M S

    2012-11-01

    Avian bipedalism is best studied in derived walking/running specialists. Here, we use kinematics and center of mass (CoM) mechanical energy patterns to investigate gait transitions of lapwings-migratory birds that forage on the ground, and therefore may need a trade-off between the functional demands of terrestrial locomotion and long distance flights. The animals ran on a treadmill while high-speed X-ray videos were recorded within the sustainable speed range. Instantaneous CoM mechanics were computed from integrating kinematics and body segment properties. Lapwings exhibit similar locomotor characteristics to specialized walking/running birds, but have less distinct gaits. At slow speeds no clear separation between vaulting (i.e., walking) and bouncing (i.e., running) energy patterns exists. Mechanical energy recovery of non-bouncing gaits correlates poorly with speed and suggests inefficient use of the inverted pendulum mechanism. Speed ranges of gaits overlap considerably, especially those of grounded running, a gait with CoM mechanics indicative of running but without an aerial phase, and aerial phase running, with no preferential gait at most speeds. Compliant limb morphology and grounded running in birds can be regarded as an evolutionary constraint, but lapwings effectively make use of advantages offered by this gait for a great fraction of their speed range. Thus, effective usage of grounded running during terrestrial locomotion is suggested generally to be a part of striding avian bipedalism-even in species not specialized in walking/running locomotion. PMID:22927254

  16. External Mechanical Work and Pendular Energy Transduction of Overground and Treadmill Walking in Adolescents with Unilateral Cerebral Palsy

    PubMed Central

    Zollinger, Marie; Degache, Francis; Currat, Gabriel; Pochon, Ludmila; Peyrot, Nicolas; Newman, Christopher J.; Malatesta, Davide

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: Motor impairments affect functional abilities and gait in children and adolescents with cerebral palsy (CP). Improving their walking is an essential objective of treatment, and the use of a treadmill for gait analysis and training could offer several advantages in adolescents with CP. However, there is a controversy regarding the similarity between treadmill and overground walking both for gait analysis and training in children and adolescents. The aim of this study was to compare the external mechanical work and pendular energy transduction of these two types of gait modalities at standard and preferred walking speeds in adolescents with unilateral cerebral palsy (UCP) and typically developing (TD) adolescents matched on age, height and body mass. Methods: Spatiotemporal parameters, external mechanical work and pendular energy transduction of walking were computed using two inertial sensors equipped with a triaxial accelerometer and gyroscope and compared in 10 UCP (14.2 ± 1.7 year) and 10 TD (14.1 ± 1.9 year) adolescents during treadmill and overground walking at standard and preferred speeds. Results: The treadmill induced almost identical mechanical changes to overground walking in TD adolescents and those with UCP, with the exception of potential and kinetic vertical and lateral mechanical works, which are both significantly increased in the overground-treadmill transition only in UCP (P < 0.05). Conclusions: Adolescents with UCP have a reduced adaptive capacity in absorbing and decelerating the speed created by a treadmill (i.e., dynamic stability) compared to TD adolescents. This may have an important implication in rehabilitation programs that assess and train gait by using a treadmill in adolescents with UCP. PMID:27148062

  17. Orrorin tugenensis femoral morphology and the evolution of hominin bipedalism.

    PubMed

    Richmond, Brian G; Jungers, William L

    2008-03-21

    Bipedalism is a key human adaptation and a defining feature of the hominin clade. Fossil femora discovered in Kenya and attributed to Orrorin tugenensis, at 6 million years ago, purportedly provide the earliest postcranial evidence of hominin bipedalism, but their functional and phylogenetic affinities are controversial. We show that the O. tugenensis femur differs from those of apes and Homo and most strongly resembles those of Australopithecus and Paranthropus, indicating that O. tugenensis was bipedal but is not more closely related to Homo than to Australopithecus. Femoral morphology indicates that O. tugenensis shared distinctive hip biomechanics with australopiths, suggesting that this complex evolved early in human evolution and persisted for almost 4 million years until modifications of the hip appeared in the late Pliocene in early Homo. PMID:18356526

  18. Metabolic Cost, Mechanical Work, and Efficiency during Normal Walking in Obese and Normal-Weight Children

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Huang, Liang; Chen, Peijie; Zhuang, Jie; Zhang, Yanxin; Walt, Sharon

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: This study aimed to investigate the influence of childhood obesity on energetic cost during normal walking and to determine if obese children choose a walking strategy optimizing their gait pattern. Method: Sixteen obese children with no functional abnormalities were matched by age and gender with 16 normal-weight children. All…

  19. Human Odometry Verifies the Symmetry Perspective on Bipedal Gaits

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Turvey, M. T.; Harrison, Steven J.; Frank, Till D.; Carello, Claudia

    2012-01-01

    Bipedal gaits have been classified on the basis of the group symmetry of the minimal network of identical differential equations (alias "cells") required to model them. Primary gaits are characterized by dihedral symmetry, whereas secondary gaits are characterized by a lower, cyclic symmetry. This fact was used in a test of human odometry. Results…

  20. Advanced age and the mechanics of uphill walking: a joint-level, inverse dynamic analysis

    PubMed Central

    Franz, Jason R.; Kram, Rodger

    2013-01-01

    We sought to gain insight into age-related muscular limitations that may restrict the uphill walking ability of old adults. We hypothesized that: 1) old adults would exhibit smaller peak ankle joint kinetics and larger peak hip joint kinetics than young adults during both level and uphill walking and 2) these age-related differences in ankle and hip joint kinetics would be greatest during uphill vs. level walking. We quantified the sagittal plane ankle, knee, and hip joint kinetics of 10 old adults (mean ± SD, age: 72 ± 5 yrs) and 8 young adults (age: 27 ± 5 yrs) walking at 1.25 m/s on a dual-belt, force-measuring treadmill at four grades (0°, +3°, +6°, +9°). As hypothesized, old adults walked with smaller peak ankle joint kinetics (e.g., power generation: −18% at +9°) and larger peak hip joint kinetics (e.g., power generation: +119% at +9°) than young adults, most evident during the late stance phase of both level and uphill conditions. Old adults performed two to three times more single support positive work than young adults via muscles crossing the knee. In partial support of our second hypothesis, the age-related reduction in peak ankle joint moments was greater during uphill (−0.41 Nm/kg) vs. level (−0.30 Nm/kg) walking. However, old adults that exhibited reduced propulsive ankle function during level walking could perform 44% more trailing leg positive ankle joint work to walk uphill. Our findings indicate that maintaining ankle power generation and trailing leg propulsive function should be the primary focus of “prehabilitation” strategies for old adults to preserve their uphill walking ability. PMID:23850328

  1. Muscle mechanical work requirements during normal walking: the energetic cost of raising the body's center-of-mass is significant.

    PubMed

    Neptune, R R; Zajac, F E; Kautz, S A

    2004-06-01

    Inverted pendulum models of walking predict that little muscle work is required for the exchange of body potential and kinetic energy in single-limb support. External power during walking (product of the measured ground reaction force and body center-of-mass (COM) velocity) is often analyzed to deduce net work output or mechanical energetic cost by muscles. Based on external power analyses and inverted pendulum theory, it has been suggested that a primary mechanical energetic cost may be associated with the mechanical work required to redirect the COM motion at the step-to-step transition. However, these models do not capture the multi-muscle, multi-segmental properties of walking, co-excitation of muscles to coordinate segmental energetic flow, and simultaneous production of positive and negative muscle work. In this study, a muscle-actuated forward dynamic simulation of walking was used to assess whether: (1). potential and kinetic energy of the body are exchanged with little muscle work; (2). external mechanical power can estimate the mechanical energetic cost for muscles; and (3.) the net work output and the mechanical energetic cost for muscles occurs mostly in double support. We found that the net work output by muscles cannot be estimated from external power and was the highest when the COM moved upward in early single-limb support even though kinetic and potential energy were exchanged, and muscle mechanical (and most likely metabolic) energetic cost is dominated not only by the need to redirect the COM in double support but also by the need to raise the COM in single support. PMID:15111069

  2. Effect of carrying a weighted backpack on lung mechanics during treadmill walking in healthy men.

    PubMed

    Dominelli, Paolo B; Sheel, A William; Foster, Glen E

    2012-06-01

    Weighted backpacks are used extensively in recreational and occupational settings, yet their effects on lung mechanics during acute exercise is poorly understood. The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of different backpack weights on lung mechanics and breathing patterns during treadmill walking. Subjects (n = 7, age = 28 ± 6 years), completed two 2.5-min exercise stages for each backpack condition [no backpack (NP), an un-weighted backpack (NW) or a backpack weighing 15, 25 or 35 kg]. A maximal expiratory flow volume curve was generated for each backpack condition and an oesophageal balloon catheter was used to estimate pleural pressure. The 15, 25 and 35 kg backpacks caused a 3, 5 and 8% (P < 0.05) reduction in forced vital capacity compared with the NP condition, respectively. For the same exercise stage, the power of breathing (POB) requirement was higher in the 35 kg backpack compared to NP (32 ± 4.3 vs. 88 ± 9.0 J min(-1), P < 0.05; respectively). Independent of changes in minute ventilation, end-expiratory lung volume decreased as backpack weight increased. As backpack weight increased, there was a concomitant decline in calculated maximal ventilation, a rise in minute ventilation, and a resultant greater utilization of maximal available ventilation. In conclusion, wearing a weighted backpack during an acute bout of exercise altered operational lung volumes; however, adaptive changes in breathing mechanics may have minimized changes in the required POB such that at an iso-ventilation, wearing a backpack weighing up to 35 kg does not increase the POB requirement. PMID:21947409

  3. The gaits of primates: center of mass mechanics in walking, cantering and galloping ring-tailed lemurs, Lemur catta.

    PubMed

    O'Neill, Matthew C; Schmitt, Daniel

    2012-05-15

    Most primates, including lemurs, have a broad range of locomotor capabilities, yet much of the time, they walk at slow speeds and amble, canter or gallop at intermediate and fast speeds. Although numerous studies have investigated limb function during primate quadrupedalism, how the center of mass (COM) moves is not well understood. Here, we examined COM energy, work and power during walking, cantering and galloping in ring-tailed lemurs, Lemur catta (N=5), over a broad speed range (0.43-2.91 m s(-1)). COM energy recoveries were substantial during walking (35-71%) but lower during canters and gallops (10-51%). COM work, power and collisional losses increased with speed. The positive COM works were 0.625 J kg(-1) m(-1) for walks and 1.661 J kg(-1) m(-1) for canters and gallops, which are in the middle range of published values for terrestrial animals. Although some discontinuities in COM mechanics were evident between walking and cantering, there was no apparent analog to the trot-gallop transition across the intermediate and fast speed range (dimensionless v>0.75, Fr>0.5). A phenomenological model of a lemur cantering and trotting at the same speed shows that canters ensure continuous contact of the body with the substrate while reducing peak vertical COM forces, COM stiffness and COM collisions. We suggest that cantering, rather than trotting, at intermediate speeds may be tied to the arboreal origins of the Order Primates. These data allow us to better understand the mechanics of primate gaits and shed new light on primate locomotor evolution. PMID:22539740

  4. Avoidance of overheating and selection for both hair loss and bipedality in hominins

    PubMed Central

    Ruxton, Graeme D.; Wilkinson, David M.

    2011-01-01

    Two frequently debated aspects of hominin evolution are the development of upright bipedal stance and reduction in body hair. It has long been argued, on the basis of heat-balance models, that thermoregulation might have been important in the evolution of both of these traits. Previous models were based on a stationary individual standing in direct sunlight; here we extend this approach to consider a walking hominin, having argued that walking is more thermally challenging than remaining still. Further, stationary activities may be more compatible with shade seeking than activities (such as foraging) involving travel across the landscape. Our model predictions suggest that upright stance probably evolved for nonthermoregulatory reasons. However, the thermoregulatory explanation for hair loss was supported. Specifically, we postulate progressive hair loss being selected and this allowing individuals to be active in hot, open environments initially around dusk and dawn without overheating. Then, as our ancestors’ hair loss increased and sweating ability improved over evolutionary time, the fraction of the day when they could remain active in such environments extended. Our model suggests that only when hair loss and sweating ability reach near-modern human levels could hominins have been active in the heat of the day in hot, open environments. PMID:22160694

  5. Co-simulation of neuromuscular dynamics and knee mechanics during human walking.

    PubMed

    Thelen, Darryl G; Won Choi, Kwang; Schmitz, Anne M

    2014-02-01

    This study introduces a framework for co-simulating neuromuscular dynamics and knee joint mechanics during gait. A knee model was developed that included 17 ligament bundles and a representation of the distributed contact between a femoral component and tibial insert surface. The knee was incorporated into a forward dynamics musculoskeletal model of the lower extremity. A computed muscle control algorithm was then used to modulate the muscle excitations to drive the model to closely track measured hip, knee, and ankle angle trajectories of a subject walking overground with an instrumented knee replacement. The resulting simulations predicted the muscle forces, ligament forces, secondary knee kinematics, and tibiofemoral contact loads. Model-predicted tibiofemoral contact forces were of comparable magnitudes to experimental measurements, with peak medial (1.95 body weight (BW)) and total (2.76 BW) contact forces within 4-17% of measured values. Average root-mean-square errors over a gait cycle were 0.26, 0.42, and 0.51 BW for the medial, lateral, and total contact forces, respectively. The model was subsequently used to predict variations in joint contact pressure that could arise by altering the frontal plane joint alignment. Small variations (±2 deg) in the alignment of the femoral component and tibial insert did not substantially affect the location of contact pressure, but did alter the medio-lateral distribution of load and internal tibia rotation in swing. Thus, the computational framework can be used to virtually assess the coupled influence of both physiological and design factors on in vivo joint mechanics and performance. PMID:24390129

  6. A springy pendulum could describe the swing leg kinetics of human walking.

    PubMed

    Song, Hyunggwi; Park, Heewon; Park, Sukyung

    2016-06-14

    The dynamics of human walking during various walking conditions could be qualitatively captured by the springy legged dynamics, which have been used as a theoretical framework for bipedal robotics applications. However, the spring-loaded inverted pendulum model describes the motion of the center of mass (CoM), which combines the torso, swing and stance legs together and does not explicitly inform us as to whether the inter-limb dynamics share the springy legged dynamics characteristics of the CoM. In this study, we examined whether the swing leg dynamics could also be represented by springy mechanics and whether the swing leg stiffness shows a dependence on gait speed, as has been observed in CoM mechanics during walking. The swing leg was modeled as a spring-loaded pendulum hinged at the hip joint, which is under forward motion. The model parameters of the loaded mass were adopted from body parameters and anthropometric tables, whereas the free model parameters for the rest length of the spring and its stiffness were estimated to best match the data for the swing leg joint forces. The joint forces of the swing leg were well represented by the springy pendulum model at various walking speeds with a regression coefficient of R(2)>0.8. The swing leg stiffness increased with walking speed and was correlated with the swing frequency, which is consistent with previous observations from CoM dynamics described using the compliant leg. These results suggest that the swing leg also shares the springy dynamics, and the compliant walking model could be extended to better present swing leg dynamics. PMID:27020749

  7. Metabolic cost and mechanics of walking in women with fibromyalgia syndrome

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Fibromyalgia syndrome (FS) is characterized by the presence of widespread pain, fatigue, muscle weakness and reduced work capacity. Previous research has demonstrated that women with fibromyalgia have altered walking (gait) patterns, which may be a consequence of muscular pain. This altered gait is characterized by greater reliance on hip flexors rather than ankle plantar flexors and resembles gait patterns seen in normal individuals walking at higher speeds, suggesting that gait of individuals with fibromyalgia may be less efficient. This study compared rates of energy expenditure of 6 females with FS relative to 6 normal, age and weight matched controls, at various walking speeds on a motorized treadmill. Metabolic measurements including V02 (ml/kg/min), respirations, heart rate and calculated energy expenditures as well as the Borg Scale of Perceived Exertion scale ratings were determined at baseline and for 10 min while walking at each of 2, 4 and 5 km/hour on 1% grade. Kinematic recordings of limb and body movements while treadmill walking and separate measurements of ground reaction forces while walking over ground were also determined. In addition, all subjects completed the RAND 36-Item Health Survey (1.0). Findings Gait analysis results were similar to previous reports of altered gait patterns in FS females. Despite noticeable differences in gait patterns, no significant differences (p > 0.05) existed between the FS and control subjects on any metabolic measures at any walking speed. Total number of steps taken was also similar between groups. Ratings on the Borg Scale of Perceived Exertion, the RAND and self-reported levels of pain indicated significantly greater (p < 0.05) perceived effort and pain in FS subjects relative to control subjects during walking and daily activities. Conclusions The altered gait patterns and greater perceptions of effort and pain did not significantly increase the metabolic costs of walking in women with FS and

  8. Statistical analysis of sets of random walks: how to resolve their generating mechanism.

    PubMed

    Coscoy, Sylvie; Huguet, Etienne; Amblard, François

    2007-11-01

    The analysis of experimental random walks aims at identifying the process(es) that generate(s) them. It is in general a difficult task, because statistical dispersion within an experimental set of random walks is a complex combination of the stochastic nature of the generating process, and the possibility to have more than one simple process. In this paper, we study by numerical simulations how the statistical distribution of various geometric descriptors such as the second, third and fourth order moments of two-dimensional random walks depends on the stochastic process that generates that set. From these observations, we derive a method to classify complex sets of random walks, and resolve the generating process(es) by the systematic comparison of experimental moment distributions with those numerically obtained for candidate processes. In particular, various processes such as Brownian diffusion combined with convection, noise, confinement, anisotropy, or intermittency, can be resolved by using high order moment distributions. In addition, finite-size effects are observed that are useful for treating short random walks. As an illustration, we describe how the present method can be used to study the motile behavior of epithelial microvilli. The present work should be of interest in biology for all possible types of single particle tracking experiments. PMID:17896161

  9. Walking in circles: a modelling approach

    PubMed Central

    Maus, Horst-Moritz; Seyfarth, Andre

    2014-01-01

    Blindfolded or disoriented people have the tendency to walk in circles rather than on a straight line even if they wanted to. Here, we use a minimalistic walking model to examine this phenomenon. The bipedal spring-loaded inverted pendulum exhibits asymptotically stable gaits with centre of mass (CoM) dynamics and ground reaction forces similar to human walking in the sagittal plane. We extend this model into three dimensions, and show that stable walking patterns persist if the leg is aligned with respect to the body (here: CoM velocity) instead of a world reference frame. Further, we demonstrate that asymmetric leg configurations, which are common in humans, will typically lead to walking in circles. The diameter of these circles depends strongly on parameter configuration, but is in line with empirical data from human walkers. Simulation results suggest that walking radius and especially direction of rotation are highly dependent on leg configuration and walking velocity, which explains inconsistent veering behaviour in repeated trials in human data. Finally, we discuss the relation between findings in the model and implications for human walking. PMID:25056215

  10. Walking in circles: a modelling approach.

    PubMed

    Maus, Horst-Moritz; Seyfarth, Andre

    2014-10-01

    Blindfolded or disoriented people have the tendency to walk in circles rather than on a straight line even if they wanted to. Here, we use a minimalistic walking model to examine this phenomenon. The bipedal spring-loaded inverted pendulum exhibits asymptotically stable gaits with centre of mass (CoM) dynamics and ground reaction forces similar to human walking in the sagittal plane. We extend this model into three dimensions, and show that stable walking patterns persist if the leg is aligned with respect to the body (here: CoM velocity) instead of a world reference frame. Further, we demonstrate that asymmetric leg configurations, which are common in humans, will typically lead to walking in circles. The diameter of these circles depends strongly on parameter configuration, but is in line with empirical data from human walkers. Simulation results suggest that walking radius and especially direction of rotation are highly dependent on leg configuration and walking velocity, which explains inconsistent veering behaviour in repeated trials in human data. Finally, we discuss the relation between findings in the model and implications for human walking. PMID:25056215

  11. A mechanical model of the human ankle in the transverse plane during straight walking: implications for prosthetic design.

    PubMed

    Glaister, Brian C; Schoen, Jason A; Orendurff, Michael S; Klute, Glenn K

    2009-03-01

    In order to protect sensitive residual limb soft tissues, lower limb prostheses need to control torsional loads during gait. To assist with the design of a torsional prosthesis, this paper used simple mechanical elements to model the behavior of the human ankle in the transverse plane during straight walking. Motion capture data were collected from ten able-bodied subjects walking straight ahead at self-selected walking speeds. Gait cycle data were separated into four distinct states, and passive torsional springs and dampers were chosen to model the behavior in each state. Since prosthetic design is facilitated by simplicity, it was desirable to investigate if elastic behavior could account for the physiological ankle moment and include viscous behavior only if necessary to account for the inadequacies of the spring model. In all four states, a springlike behavior was able to account for most of the physiological ankle moments, rendering the use of a damper unnecessary. In State 1, a quadratic torsional spring was chosen to model the behavior, while linear torsional springs were chosen for States 2-4. A prosthetic system that actively changes stiffness could be able to replicate the physiological behavior of the human ankle in the transverse plane. The results of this study will contribute to the mechanical design and control of a biomimetic torsional prosthesis for lower limb amputees. PMID:19154072

  12. Fossils, feet and the evolution of human bipedal locomotion.

    PubMed

    Harcourt-Smith, W E H; Aiello, L C

    2004-05-01

    We review the evolution of human bipedal locomotion with a particular emphasis on the evolution of the foot. We begin in the early twentieth century and focus particularly on hypotheses of an ape-like ancestor for humans and human bipedal locomotion put forward by a succession of Gregory, Keith, Morton and Schultz. We give consideration to Morton's (1935) synthesis of foot evolution, in which he argues that the foot of the common ancestor of modern humans and the African apes would be intermediate between the foot of Pan and Hylobates whereas the foot of a hypothetical early hominin would be intermediate between that of a gorilla and a modern human. From this base rooted in comparative anatomy of living primates we trace changing ideas about the evolution of human bipedalism as increasing amounts of postcranial fossil material were discovered. Attention is given to the work of John Napier and John Robinson who were pioneers in the interpretation of Plio-Pleistocene hominin skeletons in the 1960s. This is the period when the wealth of evidence from the southern African australopithecine sites was beginning to be appreciated and Olduvai Gorge was revealing its first evidence for Homo habilis. In more recent years, the discovery of the Laetoli footprint trail, the AL 288-1 (A. afarensis) skeleton, the wealth of postcranial material from Koobi Fora, the Nariokotome Homo ergaster skeleton, Little Foot (Stw 573) from Sterkfontein in South Africa, and more recently tantalizing material assigned to the new and very early taxa Orrorin tugenensis, Ardipithecus ramidus and Sahelanthropus tchadensis has fuelled debate and speculation. The varying interpretations based on this material, together with changing theoretical insights and analytical approaches, is discussed and assessed in the context of new three-dimensional morphometric analyses of australopithecine and Homo foot bones, suggesting that there may have been greater diversity in human bipedalism in the earlier phases

  13. Fossils, feet and the evolution of human bipedal locomotion

    PubMed Central

    Harcourt-Smith, W E H; Aiello, L C

    2004-01-01

    We review the evolution of human bipedal locomotion with a particular emphasis on the evolution of the foot. We begin in the early twentieth century and focus particularly on hypotheses of an ape-like ancestor for humans and human bipedal locomotion put forward by a succession of Gregory, Keith, Morton and Schultz. We give consideration to Morton's (1935) synthesis of foot evolution, in which he argues that the foot of the common ancestor of modern humans and the African apes would be intermediate between the foot of Pan and Hylobates whereas the foot of a hypothetical early hominin would be intermediate between that of a gorilla and a modern human. From this base rooted in comparative anatomy of living primates we trace changing ideas about the evolution of human bipedalism as increasing amounts of postcranial fossil material were discovered. Attention is given to the work of John Napier and John Robinson who were pioneers in the interpretation of Plio-Pleistocene hominin skeletons in the 1960s. This is the period when the wealth of evidence from the southern African australopithecine sites was beginning to be appreciated and Olduvai Gorge was revealing its first evidence for Homo habilis. In more recent years, the discovery of the Laetoli footprint trail, the AL 288-1 (A. afarensis) skeleton, the wealth of postcranial material from Koobi Fora, the Nariokotome Homo ergaster skeleton, Little Foot (Stw 573) from Sterkfontein in South Africa, and more recently tantalizing material assigned to the new and very early taxa Orrorin tugenensis, Ardipithecus ramidus and Sahelanthropus tchadensis has fuelled debate and speculation. The varying interpretations based on this material, together with changing theoretical insights and analytical approaches, is discussed and assessed in the context of new three-dimensional morphometric analyses of australopithecine and Homo foot bones, suggesting that there may have been greater diversity in human bipedalism in the earlier phases

  14. Systematic variation of prosthetic foot spring affects center-of-mass mechanics and metabolic cost during walking

    PubMed Central

    Zelik, Karl E.; Collins, Steven H.; Adamczyk, Peter G.; Segal, Ava D.; Klute, Glenn K.; Morgenroth, David C.; Hahn, Michael E.; Orendurff, Michael S.; Czerniecki, Joseph M.; Kuo, Arthur D.

    2014-01-01

    Lower-limb amputees expend more energy to walk than non-amputees and have an elevated risk of secondary disabilities. Insufficient push-off by the prosthetic foot may be a contributing factor. We aimed to systematically study the effect of prosthetic foot mechanics on gait, to gain insight into fundamental prosthetic design principles. We varied a single parameter in isolation, the energy-storing spring in a prototype prosthetic foot, the Controlled Energy Storage and Return (CESR) foot, and observed the effect on gait. Subjects walked on the CESR foot with three different springs. We performed parallel studies on amputees and on non-amputees wearing prosthetic simulators. In both groups, spring characteristics similarly affected ankle and body center-of-mass (COM) mechanics and metabolic cost. Softer springs led to greater energy storage, energy return and prosthetic limb COM push-off work. But metabolic energy expenditure was lowest with a spring of intermediate stiffness, suggesting biomechanical disadvantages to the softest spring despite its greater push-off. Disadvantages of the softest spring may include excessive heel displacements and COM collision losses. We also observed some differences in joint kinetics between amputees and non-amputees walking on the prototype foot. During prosthetic push-off, amputees exhibited reduced energy transfer from the prosthesis to the COM along with increased hip work, perhaps due to greater energy dissipation at the knee. Nevertheless, the results indicate that spring compliance can contribute to push-off, but with biomechanical trade-offs that limit the degree to which greater push-off might improve walking economy. PMID:21708509

  15. In search of the pitching momentum that enables some lizards to sustain bipedal running at constant speeds

    PubMed Central

    Van Wassenbergh, Sam; Aerts, Peter

    2013-01-01

    The forelimbs of lizards are often lifted from the ground when they start sprinting. Previous research pointed out that this is a consequence of the propulsive forces from the hindlimbs. However, despite forward acceleration being hypothesized as necessary to lift the head, trunk and forelimbs, some species of agamids, teiids and basilisks sustain running in a bipedal posture at a constant speed for a relatively long time. Biomechanical modelling of steady bipedal running in the agamid Ctenophorus cristatus now shows that a combination of three mechanisms must be present to generate the angular impulse needed to cancel or oppose the effect of gravity. First, the trunk must be lifted significantly to displace the centre of mass more towards the hip joint. Second, the nose-up pitching moment resulting from aerodynamic forces exerted at the lizard's surface must be taken into account. Third, the vertical ground-reaction forces at the hindlimb must show a certain degree of temporal asymmetry with higher forces closer to the instant of initial foot contact. Such asymmetrical vertical ground-reaction force profiles, which differ from the classical spring-mass model of bipedal running, seem inherent to the windmilling, splayed-legged running style of lizards. PMID:23658116

  16. [Walking abnormalities in children].

    PubMed

    Segawa, Masaya

    2010-11-01

    Walking is a spontaneous movement termed locomotion that is promoted by activation of antigravity muscles by serotonergic (5HT) neurons. Development of antigravity activity follows 3 developmental epochs of the sleep-wake (S-W) cycle and is modulated by particular 5HT neurons in each epoch. Activation of antigravity activities occurs in the first epoch (around the age of 3 to 4 months) as restriction of atonia in rapid eye movement (REM) stage and development of circadian S-W cycle. These activities strengthen in the second epoch, with modulation of day-time sleep and induction of crawling around the age of 8 months and induction of walking by 1 year. Around the age of 1 year 6 months, absence of guarded walking and interlimb cordination is observed along with modulation of day-time sleep to once in the afternoon. Bipedal walking in upright position occurs in the third epoch, with development of a biphasic S-W cycle by the age of 4-5 years. Patients with infantile autism (IA), Rett syndrome (RTT), or Tourette syndrome (TS) show failure in the development of the first, second, or third epoch, respectively. Patients with IA fail to develop interlimb coordination; those with RTT, crawling and walking; and those with TS, walking in upright posture. Basic pathophysiology underlying these condition is failure in restricting atonia in REM stage; this induces dysfunction of the pedunculopontine nucleus and consequently dys- or hypofunction of the dopamine (DA) neurons. DA hypofunction in the developing brain, associated with compensatory upward regulation of the DA receptors causes psychobehavioral disorders in infancy (IA), failure in synaptogenesis in the frontal cortex and functional development of the motor and associate cortexes in late infancy through the basal ganglia (RTT), and failure in functional development of the prefrontal cortex through the basal ganglia (TS). Further, locomotion failure in early childhood causes failure in development of functional

  17. [The anatomical and functional origin of the first bipedalism].

    PubMed

    Coppens, Y

    1991-10-01

    This communication is the synthesis of ten years of researchers of comparative anatomy done by the author or under his control on fossil Hominids, three million years old, found by his expeditions in Eastern Ethiopia. It brings, for the first time, the odd picture of a skeleton adapted to arboricolism and bipedalism together. The rachis has already the curves of an erect being but with at least a thoraco-lumbar cyphosis a bit more elongated than in our own rachis; the pelvis is wide and shallow like the pelvis of a biped but with many particular features like the width of the iliac wings, a great biacetabular diameter, the small size of the coxo-femoral joints; the femur is short with a special long neck, a very oblique diaphysis like in Man and an intercondylar fossa, deep and wide like in chimp; the tibia is also short, its spines very tight in such a way that the knee shows a great laxity. The foot is short and flat, with an abducted hallux and long curved toes; the scapular, elbow and wrist joints show, at the opposite of the knee joint, a great solidity, but both characteristics of the hind and fore-limb joints are not in contradiction: they are, as in chimpanzees again, functionally adapted to climbing and moving in the trees where are needed firm grip of the hands as well as mobility of the knee and of the foot. It seems that the early Australopithecine' bipedalism was original, different from ours and quite instable: short steps were necessary to maintain equilibrium as well as a strong rotation of the pelvis around the vertebral axis (50 to 60 degrees on each side). This analysis is then demonstrating a real evolution of bipedalism which was not at all, at once, the bipedalism of Homo sapiens, as it has been claimed. This paper is also showing that bipedalism anatomic organization is taking place from the pelvis to the foot and not the other way round. At last, as we have found, also in Ethiopia, stone-tools more than three million years old in association

  18. Compensatory mechanisms during walking in response to muscle weakness in spinal muscular atrophy, type III.

    PubMed

    Matjacić, Zlatko; Olensek, Andrej; Krajnik, Janez; Eymard, Bruno; Zupan, Anton; Praznikar, Ales

    2008-05-01

    Our knowledge on altered neurological control of walking due to weakness of various muscle groups of the lower extremities is limited. The aim of this study was to assess kinematic, kinetic and electromyographic (EMG) walking patterns in a functionally homogeneous group of seven subjects with spinal muscular atrophy, type III (SMA group) and compare them with normal data obtained from nine healthy subjects (CONTROL group) in order to identify characteristic compensatory changes. Muscle strength at the ankle and knee joints was assessed using isokinetic dynamometry to determine variability in muscle strength: this was found to be similar in the two groups. Kinematic, kinetic and EMG patterns were assessed during walking in the SMA and CONTROL groups. The results showed changes in the activity of ankle plantarflexors and associated control of the center of pressure during loading response and midstance, which facilitated minimization of the external flexion moment acting on the knee and hip in the SMA group. Additionally, we identified distinct and consistent changes in the control of hip rotators that act to rapidly extend the hip early in stance phase and in the control of contralateral hip abductors that act delay weight shift onto the leg entering the stance phase. From these results we can conclude that the most important muscle groups compensating for reduced strength in knee and hip muscles are the ankle plantarflexors, hip rotators and hip abductors. This finding would have direct application in rehabilitation treatment programs. PMID:17980600

  19. Effects of short-term brace wearing on the pendulum-like mechanism of walking in healthy subjects.

    PubMed

    Mahaudens, Philippe; Banse, Xavier; Detrembleur, Christine

    2008-11-01

    Progressive spinal deformities, such as scoliosis, often need orthotic management to prevent deterioration. Such braces may alter spinal segmental movements, which contribute in minimizing energy requirements during gait. The goal of this study was to isolate the immediate effect of bracing on mechanical work and energy cost in 13 healthy subjects. Gait was assessed by a conventional motion analysis system. Our results showed a decrease in pelvis and shoulder motion, an increase in external work, and an alteration in pendulum-like mechanism of walking when wearing the brace. However, no significant difference was observed in total mechanical work, electromyographic activity and energy cost. The loss of efficiency of this pendulum mechanism could be due to the reduction of pelvis and shoulder motion brought about by the brace. PMID:18515109

  20. Biomechanical mechanism for transitions in phase and frequency of arm and leg swing during walking.

    PubMed

    Kubo, Masayoshi; Wagenaar, Robert C; Saltzman, Elliot; Holt, Kenneth G

    2004-08-01

    As humans increase walking speed, there are concurrent transitions in the frequency ratio between arm and leg movements from 2:1 to 1:1 and in the phase relationship between the movements of the two arms from in-phase to out-of-phase. Superharmonic resonance of a pendulum with monofrequency excitation had been proposed as a potential model for this phenomenon. In this study, an alternative model of paired pendulums with multiple-frequency excitations is explored. It was predicted that the occurrence of the concurrent transitions was a function of (1) changes in the magnitude ratio of shoulder accelerations at step and stride frequencies that accompany changes in walking speed and (2) proximity of these frequencies to the natural resonance frequencies of the arms modeled as a pair of passive pendulums. Model predictions were compared with data collected from 14 healthy young subjects who were instructed to walk on a treadmill. Walking speeds were manipulated between 0.18 and 1.52 m/s in steps of 0.22 m/s. Kinematic data for the arms and shoulders were collected using a 3D motion analysis system, and simulations were conducted in which the movements of a double-pendulum system excited by the accelerations at the suspension point were analyzed to determine the extent to which the arms acted as passive pendulums. It was confirmed that the acceleration waveforms at the shoulder are composed primarily of stride and step frequency components. Between the shoulders, the stride frequency components were out-of-phase, while the step frequency components were in-phase. The amplitude ratio of the acceleration waveform components at the step and stride frequencies changed as a function of walking speed and were associated with the occurrence of the transitions. Simulation results using these summed components as excitatory inputs to the double-pendulum system were in agreement with actual transitions in 80% of the cases. The potential role of state-dependent active muscle

  1. "Far" and "Near" Visual Acuity While Walking and the Collective Contributions of Non-Ocular Mechanisms to Gaze Stabilization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Peters, Brian T.; vanEmmerik, Richard E. A.; Bloomberg, Jacob J.

    2006-01-01

    Gaze stabilization was quantified in subjects (n=11) as they walked on a motorized treadmill (1.8 m/s) and viewed visual targets at two viewing distances. A "far" target was positioned at 4 m (FAR) in front of the subject and the "near" target was placed at a distance of 0.5 m (NEAR). A direct measure of visual acuity was used to assess the overall effectiveness of the gaze stabilization system. The contributions of nonocular mechanisms to the gaze goal were also quantified using a measure of the distance between the subject and point in space where fixation of the visual target would require the least eye movement amplitude (i.e. the head fixation distance (HFD)). Kinematic variables mirrored those of previous investigations with the vertical trunk translation and head pitch signals, and the lateral translation and head yaw signals maintaining what appear as antiphase relationships. However, an investigation of the temporal relationships between the maxima and minima of the vertical translation and head pitch signals show that while the maximum in vertical translation occurs at the point of the minimum head pitch signal, the inverse is not true. The maximum in the head pitch signal lags the vertical translation minimum by an average of greater than 12 percent of the step cycle time. Three HFD measures, one each for data in the sagittal and transverse planes, and one that combined the movements from both planes, all revealed changes between the FAR and NEAR target viewing conditions. This reorganization of the nonocular degrees of freedom while walking was consistent with a strategy to reduce the magnitude of the eye movements required when viewing the NEAR target. Despite this reorganization, acuity measures show that image stabilization is not occurring while walking and viewing the NEAR target. Group means indicate that visual acuity is not affected while walking in the FAR condition, but a decrement of 0.15 logMAR (i.e. 1.5 eye chart lines) exists between the

  2. Neural Computation Scheme of Compound Control: Tacit Learning for Bipedal Locomotion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shimoda, Shingo; Kimura, Hidenori

    The growing need for controlling complex behaviors of versatile robots working in unpredictable environment has revealed the fundamental limitation of model-based control strategy that requires precise models of robots and environments before their operations. This difficulty is fundamental and has the same root with the well-known frame problem in artificial intelligence. It has been a central long standing issue in advanced robotics, as well as machine intelligence, to find a prospective clue to attack this fundamental difficulty. The general consensus shared by many leading researchers in the related field is that the body plays an important role in acquiring intelligence that can conquer unknowns. In particular, purposeful behaviors emerge during body-environment interactions with the help of an appropriately organized neural computational scheme that can exploit what the environment can afford. Along this line, we propose a new scheme of neural computation based on compound control which represents a typical feature of biological controls. This scheme is based on classical neuron models with local rules that can create macroscopic purposeful behaviors. This scheme is applied to a bipedal robot and generates the rhythm of walking without any model of robot dynamics and environments.

  3. Walking on Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cavagna, G. A.; Willems, P. A.; Heglund, N. C.

    1998-06-01

    Sometime in the near future humans may walk in the reduced gravity of Mars. Gravity plays an essential role in walking. On Earth, the body uses gravity to `fall forwards' at each step and then the forward speed is used to restore the initial height in a pendulum-like mechanism. When gravity is reduced, as on the Moon or Mars, the mechanism of walking must change. Here we investigate the mechanics of walking on Mars onboard an aircraft undergoing gravity-reducing flight profiles. The optimal walking speed on Mars will be 3.4 km h-1 (down from 5.5 km h-1 on Earth) and the work done per unit distance to move the centre of mass will be half that on Earth.

  4. The evolution of bipedal running in lizards suggests a consequential origin may be exploited in later lineages.

    PubMed

    Clemente, Christofer J

    2014-08-01

    The origin of bipedal locomotion in lizards is unclear. Modeling studies have suggested that bipedalism may be an exaptation, a byproduct of features originally designed to increase maneuverability, which were only later exploited. Measurement of the body center of mass (BCOM) in 124 species of lizards confirms a significant rearward shift among bipedal lineages. Further racetrack trials showed a significant acceleration threshold between bipedal and quadrupedal runs. These suggest good general support for a passive bipedal model, in which the combination of these features lead to passive lifting of the front of the body. However, variation in morphology could only account for 56% of the variation in acceleration thresholds, suggesting that dynamics have a significant influence on bipedalism. Deviation from the passive bipedal model was compared with node age, supporting an increase in the influence of dynamics over time. Together, these results show that bipedalism may have first arisen as a consequence of acceleration and a rearward shift in the BCOM, but subsequent linages have exploited this consequence to become bipedal more often, suggesting that bipedalism in lizards may convey some advantage. Exploitation of bipedalism was also associated with increased rates of phenotypic diversity, suggesting exploiting bipedalism may promote adaptive radiation. PMID:24820255

  5. Comparison of inverse-dynamics musculo-skeletal models of AL 288-1 Australopithecus afarensis and KNM-WT 15000 Homo ergaster to modern humans, with implications for the evolution of bipedalism.

    PubMed

    Wang, Weijie; Crompton, Robin H; Carey, Tanya S; Günther, Michael M; Li, Yu; Savage, Russell; Sellers, Williams I

    2004-12-01

    Size and proportions of the postcranial skeleton differ markedly between Australopithecus afarensis and Homo ergaster, and between the latter and modern Homo sapiens. This study uses computer simulations of gait in models derived from the best-known skeletons of these species (AL 288-1, Australopithecus afarensis, 3.18 million year ago) and KNM-WT 15000 (Homo ergaster, 1.5-1.8 million year ago) compared to models of adult human males and females, to estimate the required muscle power during bipedal walking, and to compare this with those in modern humans. Skeletal measurements were carried out on a cast of KNM-WT 15000, but for AL 288-1 were taken from the literature. Muscle attachments were applied to the models based on their position relative to the bone in modern humans. Joint motions and moments from experiments on human walking were input into the models to calculate muscle stress and power. The models were tested in erect walking and 'bent-hip bent-knee' gait. Calculated muscle forces were verified against EMG activity phases from experimental data, with reference to reasonable activation/force delays. Calculated muscle powers are reasonably comparable to experimentally derived metabolic values from the literature, given likely values for muscle efficiency. The results show that: 1) if evaluated by the power expenditure per unit of mass (W/kg) in walking, AL 288-1 and KNM-WT 15000 would need similar power to modern humans; however, 2) with distance-specific parameters as the criteria, AL 288-1 would require to expend relatively more muscle power (W/kg.m(-1)) in comparison to modern humans. The results imply that in the evolution of bipedalism, body proportions, for example those of KNM-WT 15000, may have evolved to obtain an effective application of muscle power to bipedal walking over a long distance, or at high speed. PMID:15566947

  6. Walking Problems

    MedlinePlus

    ... daily activities, get around, and exercise. Having a problem with walking can make daily life more difficult. ... walk is called your gait. A variety of problems can cause an abnormal gait and lead to ...

  7. How Fast Can a Human Run? - Bipedal vs. Quadrupedal Running.

    PubMed

    Kinugasa, Ryuta; Usami, Yoshiyuki

    2016-01-01

    Usain Bolt holds the current world record in the 100-m run, with a running time of 9.58 s, and has been described as the best human sprinter in history. However, this raises questions concerning the maximum human running speed, such as "Can the world's fastest men become faster still?" The correct answer is likely "Yes." We plotted the historical world records for bipedal and quadrupedal 100-m sprint times according to competition year. These historical records were plotted using several curve-fitting procedures. We found that the projected speeds intersected in 2048, when for the first time, the winning quadrupedal 100-m sprint time could be lower, at 9.276 s, than the winning bipedal time of 9.383 s. Video analysis revealed that in quadrupedal running, humans employed a transverse gallop with a small angular excursion. These results suggest that in the future, the fastest human on the planet might be a quadrupedal runner at the 2048 Olympics. This may be achieved by shifting up to the rotary gallop and taking longer strides with wide sagittal trunk motion. PMID:27446911

  8. Gait selection in the ostrich: mechanical and metabolic characteristics of walking and running with and without an aerial phase.

    PubMed Central

    Rubenson, Jonas; Heliams, Denham B.; Lloyd, David G.; Fournier, Paul A.

    2004-01-01

    It has been argued that minimization of metabolic-energy costs is a primary determinant of gait selection in terrestrial animals. This view is based predominantly on data from humans and horses, which have been shown to choose the most economical gait (walking, running, galloping) for any given speed. It is not certain whether a minimization of metabolic costs is associated with the selection of other prevalent forms of terrestrial gaits, such as grounded running (a widespread gait in birds). Using biomechanical and metabolic measurements of four ostriches moving on a treadmill over a range of speeds from 0.8 to 6.7 m s(-1), we reveal here that the selection of walking or grounded running at intermediate speeds also favours a reduction in the metabolic cost of locomotion. This gait transition is characterized by a shift in locomotor kinetics from an inverted-pendulum gait to a bouncing gait that lacks an aerial phase. By contrast, when the ostrich adopts an aerial-running gait at faster speeds, there are no abrupt transitions in mechanical parameters or in the metabolic cost of locomotion. These data suggest a continuum between grounded and aerial running, indicating that they belong to the same locomotor paradigm. PMID:15293864

  9. Walking the walk

    SciTech Connect

    Butler, B.

    1994-12-31

    Earth Day, celebrated this April, brought out a spate of press conferences, fairs and media spots. The White House announced its plans to green itself by incorporating energy efficiency and recycling, and Vice President Gore and Energy Secretary O`Leary announced the President`s Executive Order, which mandates the use of energy efficiency in federal facilities with solar as a high-profile option. At the White House itself, however, no solar application has yet been selected for installation. Another Earth Day media spot showed how the nation`s utility companies have joined Secretary O`Leary`s Climate Challenge, an ambitious voluntary program to cut greenhouse-gas emissions. During Earth Day 1994, it became clear how many houses use solar water heating and how often photovoltaics is used to power road signs and sign boards, telephones and repeaters, and for cathodic protection and security lighting. Solar energy is expanding. But if it is to become a truly everyday technology, more institution, governments, businesses and individual consumers are going to have to walk the walk. This means that Earth Day will have to last longer, environmental concerns must become more genuine, and the focus of government and business decisions must be more long-term.

  10. A synthetic small molecule that can walk down a track.

    PubMed

    von Delius, Max; Geertsema, Edzard M; Leigh, David A

    2010-02-01

    Although chemists have made small-molecule rotary motors, to date there have been no reports of small-molecule linear motors. Here we describe the synthesis and operation of a 21-atom two-legged molecular unit that is able to walk up and down a four-foothold molecular track. High processivity is conferred by designing the track-binding interactions of the two feet to be labile under different sets of conditions such that each foot can act as a temporarily fixed pivot for the other. The walker randomly and processively takes zero or one step along the track using a 'passing-leg' gait each time the environment is switched between acid and base. Replacing the basic step with a redox-mediated, disulfide-exchange reaction directionally transports the bipedal molecules away from the minimum-energy distribution by a Brownian ratchet mechanism. The ultimate goal of such studies is to produce artificial, linear molecular motors that move directionally along polymeric tracks to transport cargoes and perform tasks in a manner reminiscent of biological motor proteins. PMID:21124398

  11. The evolution of bipedalism in jerboas (rodentia: Dipodoidea): origin in humid and forested environments.

    PubMed

    Wu, Shaoyuan; Zhang, Fuchun; Edwards, Scott V; Wu, Wenyu; Ye, Jie; Bi, Shundong; Ni, Xijun; Quan, Cheng; Meng, Jin; Organ, Chris L

    2014-07-01

    Mammalian bipedalism has long been thought to have arisen in response to arid and open environments. Here, we tested whether bipedalism coevolved with environmental changes using molecular and paleontological data from the rodent superfamily Dipodoidea and statistical methods for reconstructing ancestral characteristics and past climates. Our results show that the post-Late Miocene aridification exerted selective pressures on tooth shape, but not on leg length of bipedal jerboas. Cheek tooth crown height has increased since the Late Miocene, but the hind limb/head-body length ratios remained stable and high despite the environmental change from humid and forested to arid and open conditions, rather than increasing from low to high as predicted by the arid-bipedalism hypothesis. The decoupling of locomotor and dental character evolution indicates that bipedalism evolved under selective pressure different from that of dental hypsodonty in jerboas. We reconstructed the habitats of early jerboas using floral and faunal data, and the results show that the environments in which bipedalism evolved were forested. Our results suggest that bipedalism evolved as an adaptation to humid woodlands or forests for vertical jumping. Running at high speeds is likely a by-product of selection for jumping, which became advantageous in open environments later on. PMID:24628052

  12. Multiple phylogenetically distinct events shaped the evolution of limb skeletal morphologies associated with bipedalism in the jerboas.

    PubMed

    Moore, Talia Y; Organ, Chris L; Edwards, Scott V; Biewener, Andrew A; Tabin, Clifford J; Jenkins, Farish A; Cooper, Kimberly L

    2015-11-01

    Recent rapid advances in experimental biology have expanded the opportunity for interdisciplinary investigations of the evolution of form and function in non-traditional model species. However, historical divisions of philosophy and methodology between evolutionary/organismal biologists and developmental geneticists often preclude an effective merging of disciplines. In an effort to overcome these divisions, we take advantage of the extraordinary morphological diversity of the rodent superfamily Dipodoidea, including the bipedal jerboas, to experimentally study the developmental mechanisms and biomechanical performance of a remarkably divergent limb structure. Here, we place multiple limb character states in a locomotor and phylogenetic context. Whereas obligate bipedalism arose just once in the ancestor of extant jerboas, we find that digit loss, metatarsal fusion, between-limb proportions, and within-hindlimb proportions all evolved independently of one another. Digit loss occurred three times through at least two distinct developmental mechanisms, and elongation of the hindlimb relative to the forelimb is not simply due to growth mechanisms that change proportions within the hindlimb. Furthermore, we find strong evidence for punctuated evolution of allometric scaling of hindlimb elements during the radiation of Dipodoidea. Our work demonstrates the value of leveraging the evolutionary history of a clade to establish criteria for identifying the developmental genetic mechanisms of morphological diversification. PMID:26455300

  13. The Advantage of Standing Up to Fight and the Evolution of Habitual Bipedalism in Hominins

    PubMed Central

    Carrier, David R.

    2011-01-01

    Background Many quadrupedal species stand bipedally on their hindlimbs to fight. This posture may provide a performance advantage by allowing the forelimbs to strike an opponent with the range of motion that is intrinsic to high-speed running, jumping, rapid braking and turning; the range of motion over which peak force and power can be produced. Methodology/Principal Findings To test the hypothesis that bipedal (i.e., orthograde) posture provides a performance advantage when striking with the forelimbs, I measured the force and energy produced when human subjects struck from “quadrupedal” (i.e., pronograde) and bipedal postures. Downward and upward directed striking energy was measured with a custom designed pendulum transducer. Side and forward strikes were measured with a punching bag instrumented with an accelerometer. When subjects struck downward from a bipedal posture the work was 43.70±12.59% (mean ± S.E.) greater than when they struck from a quadrupedal posture. Similarly, 47.49±17.95% more work was produced when subjects struck upward from a bipedal stance compared to a quadrupedal stance. Importantly, subjects did 229.69±44.19% more work in downward than upward directed strikes. During side and forward strikes the force impulses were 30.12±3.68 and 43.04±9.00% greater from a bipedal posture than a quadrupedal posture, respectively. Conclusions/Significance These results indicate that bipedal posture does provide a performance advantage for striking with the forelimbs. The mating systems of great apes are characterized by intense male-male competition in which conflict is resolved through force or the threat of force. Great apes often fight from bipedal posture, striking with both the fore- and hindlimbs. These observations, plus the findings of this study, suggest that sexual selection contributed to the evolution of habitual bipedalism in hominins. PMID:21611167

  14. Electrical noise to a knee joint stabilizes quiet bipedal stance.

    PubMed

    Kimura, Tetsuya; Kouzaki, Motoki

    2013-04-01

    Studies have shown that a minute, noise-like electrical stimulation (ES) of a lower limb joint stabilizes one-legged standing (OS), possibly due to the noise-enhanced joint proprioception. To demonstrate the practical utility of this finding, we assessed whether the bipedal stance (BS), relatively stable and generally employed in daily activities, is also stabilized by the same ES method. Twelve volunteers maintained quiet BS with or without an unperceivable, noise-like ES of a knee joint. The results showed that the average amplitude, peak-to-peak amplitude, and standard deviation of the foot center of pressure in the anteroposterior direction were significantly attenuated by the ES (P<0.05). These results indicate that the BS also can be stabilized by an unperceivable, noise-like ES of a knee joint. PMID:23044409

  15. The Recovery of Walking in Stroke Patients: A Review

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jang, Sung Ho

    2010-01-01

    We reviewed the literature on walking recovery of stroke patients as it relates to the following subjects: epidemiology of walking dysfunction, recovery course of walking, and recovery mechanism of walking (neural control of normal walking, the evaluation methods for leg motor function, and motor recovery mechanism of leg). The recovery of walking…

  16. Genome walking.

    PubMed

    Shapter, Frances M; Waters, Daniel L E

    2014-01-01

    Genome walking is a method for determining the DNA sequence of unknown genomic regions flanking a region of known DNA sequence. The Genome walking has the potential to capture 6-7 kb of sequence in a single round. Ideal for identifying gene promoter regions where only the coding region. Genome walking also has significant utility for capturing homologous genes in new species when there are areas in the target gene with strong sequence conservation to the characterized species. The increasing use of next-generation sequencing technologies will see the principles of genome walking adapted to in silico methods. However, for smaller projects, PCR-based genome walking will remain an efficient method of characterizing unknown flanking sequence. PMID:24243201

  17. 3D bipedal model with holonomic constraints for the decoupled optimal controller design of the biomechanical sit-to-stand maneuver.

    PubMed

    Mughal, Asif; Iqbal, Kamran

    2010-04-01

    Human voluntary movements are complex physical phenomena due to the complex control mechanism for coordination of limbs in the presence of physiological constraints. In this study, we propose a nonlinear human bipedal model with thirteen generalized coordinates to model sit-to-stand (STS) transfer. The model has three position based holonomic constraints and at the first stage, we decouple the translational variables (constrained system) from rotational variables (unconstrained systems). The unconstrained rotational degrees consist of seven sagittal and three frontal plane angles, which are controlled through their respective joint torques. We further decouple these angles in sagittal and frontal plane systems for a better control strategy. In this scheme, there are three decoupled controllers working together to stabilize the nonlinear model for a STS maneuver while satisfying the holonomic constraints. We adopt H(infinity) and H(2) controller designs for feedback torques in sagittal and frontal planes, respectively, and provide simulation results to show the improvement in the angular profiles. We further adopt this modeling strategy to study and analyze the neuromuscular disorders by decoupling healthy and neurodeficient extremities. Our study indicates that the decoupling of the bipedal model improves the controllability of the system and produces better angular profiles for a bipedal STS maneuver. This modeling scheme is useful for analysis of neuromuscular disorders and other relevant physiological motor control models. PMID:20387973

  18. Walking Perception by Walking Observers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jacobs, Alissa; Shiffrar, Maggie

    2005-01-01

    People frequently analyze the actions of other people for the purpose of action coordination. To understand whether such self-relative action perception differs from other-relative action perception, the authors had observers either compare their own walking speed with that of a point-light walker or compare the walking speeds of 2 point-light…

  19. A three-dimensional human walking model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Q. S.; Qin, J. W.; Law, S. S.

    2015-11-01

    A three-dimensional human bipedal walking model with compliant legs is presented in this paper. The legs are modeled with time-variant dampers, and the model is able to characterize the gait pattern of an individual using a minimal set of parameters. Feedback control, for both the forward and lateral movements, is implemented to regulate the walking performance of the pedestrian. The model provides an improvement over classic invert pendulum models. Numerical studies were undertaken to investigate the effects of leg stiffness and attack angle. Simulation results show that when walking at a given speed, increasing the leg stiffness with a constant attack angle results in a longer step length, a higher step frequency, a faster walking speed and an increase in both the peak vertical and lateral ground reaction forces. Increasing the attack angle with a constant leg stiffness results in a higher step frequency, a decrease in the step length, an increase in the total energy of the system and a decrease in both the peak vertical and lateral ground reaction forces.

  20. Expecting ankle tilts and wearing an ankle brace influence joint control in an imitated ankle sprain mechanism during walking.

    PubMed

    Gehring, Dominic; Wissler, Sabrina; Lohrer, Heinz; Nauck, Tanja; Gollhofer, Albert

    2014-03-01

    A thorough understanding of the functional aspects of ankle joint control is essential to developing effective injury prevention. It is of special interest to understand how neuromuscular control mechanisms and mechanical constraints stabilize the ankle joint. Therefore, the aim of the present study was to determine how expecting ankle tilts and the application of an ankle brace influence ankle joint control when imitating the ankle sprain mechanism during walking. Ankle kinematics and muscle activity were assessed in 17 healthy men. During gait rapid perturbations were applied using a trapdoor (tilting with 24° inversion and 15° plantarflexion). The subjects either knew that a perturbation would definitely occur (expected tilts) or there was only the possibility that a perturbation would occur (potential tilts). Both conditions were conducted with and without a semi-rigid ankle brace. Expecting perturbations led to an increased ankle eversion at foot contact, which was mediated by an altered muscle preactivation pattern. Moreover, the maximal inversion angle (-7%) and velocity (-4%), as well as the reactive muscle response were significantly reduced when the perturbation was expected. While wearing an ankle brace did not influence muscle preactivation nor the ankle kinematics before ground contact, it significantly reduced the maximal ankle inversion angle (-14%) and velocity (-11%) as well as reactive neuromuscular responses. The present findings reveal that expecting ankle inversion modifies neuromuscular joint control prior to landing. Although such motor control strategies are weaker in their magnitude compared with braces, they seem to assist ankle joint stabilization in a close-to-injury situation. PMID:24365326

  1. Reflex Control of Robotic Gait Using Human Walking Data

    PubMed Central

    Macleod, Catherine A.; Meng, Lin; Conway, Bernard A.; Porr, Bernd

    2014-01-01

    Control of human walking is not thoroughly understood, which has implications in developing suitable strategies for the retraining of a functional gait following neurological injuries such as spinal cord injury (SCI). Bipedal robots allow us to investigate simple elements of the complex nervous system to quantify their contribution to motor control. RunBot is a bipedal robot which operates through reflexes without using central pattern generators or trajectory planning algorithms. Ground contact information from the feet is used to activate motors in the legs, generating a gait cycle visually similar to that of humans. Rather than developing a more complicated biologically realistic neural system to control the robot's stepping, we have instead further simplified our model by measuring the correlation between heel contact and leg muscle activity (EMG) in human subjects during walking and from this data created filter functions transferring the sensory data into motor actions. Adaptive filtering was used to identify the unknown transfer functions which translate the contact information into muscle activation signals. Our results show a causal relationship between ground contact information from the heel and EMG, which allows us to create a minimal, linear, analogue control system for controlling walking. The derived transfer functions were applied to RunBot II as a proof of concept. The gait cycle produced was stable and controlled, which is a positive indication that the transfer functions have potential for use in the control of assistive devices for the retraining of an efficient and effective gait with potential applications in SCI rehabilitation. PMID:25347544

  2. Gluteus maximus muscle function and the origin of hominid bipedality.

    PubMed

    Marzke, M W; Longhill, J M; Rasmussen, S A

    1988-12-01

    Bipedality not only frees the hands for tool use but also enhances tool use by allowing use of the trunk for leverage in applying force and thus imparting greater final velocity to tools. Since the weight and acceleration of the trunk and forelimbs on the hindlimbs must be counteracted by muscles such as m. gluteus maximus that control pelvic and trunk movements, it is suggested that the large size of the cranial portion of the human gluteus maximus muscle and its unique attachment to the dorsal ilium (which is apparent in the Makapan australopithecine ilium) may have contributed to the effectiveness with which trunk movement was exploited in early hominid foraging activities. To test this hypothesis, the cranial portions of both right and left muscles were investigated in six human subjects with electromyography during throwing, clubbing, digging, and lifting. The muscles were found to be significantly recruited when the trunk is used in throwing and clubbing, initiating rotation of the pelvis and braking it as trunk rotation ceases and the forelimb accelerates. They stabilize the pelvis during digging and exhibit marked and prolonged activity when the trunk is maintained in partial flexion during lifting of heavy objects. PMID:3223519

  3. Quantum stochastic walks: A generalization of classical random walks and quantum walks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Whitfield, James D.; Rodríguez-Rosario, César A.; Aspuru-Guzik, Alán

    2010-02-01

    We introduce the quantum stochastic walk (QSW), which determines the evolution of a generalized quantum-mechanical walk on a graph that obeys a quantum stochastic equation of motion. Using an axiomatic approach, we specify the rules for all possible quantum, classical, and quantum-stochastic transitions from a vertex as defined by its connectivity. We show how the family of possible QSWs encompasses both the classical random walk (CRW) and the quantum walk (QW) as special cases but also includes more general probability distributions. As an example, we study the QSW on a line and the glued tree of depth three to observe the behavior of the QW-to-CRW transition.

  4. Powered ankle exoskeletons reveal the metabolic cost of plantar flexor mechanical work during walking with longer steps at constant step frequency.

    PubMed

    Sawicki, Gregory S; Ferris, Daniel P

    2009-01-01

    We examined the metabolic cost of plantar flexor muscle-tendon mechanical work during human walking. Nine healthy subjects walked at constant step frequency on a motorized treadmill at speeds corresponding to 80% (1.00 m s(-1)), 100% (1.25 m s(-1)), 120% (1.50 m s(-1)) and 140% (1.75 m s(-1)) of their preferred step length (L(*)) at 1.25 m s(-1). In each condition subjects donned robotic ankle exoskeletons on both legs. The exoskeletons were powered by artificial pneumatic muscles and controlled using soleus electromyography (i.e. proportional myoelectric control). We measured subjects' metabolic energy expenditure and exoskeleton mechanics during both unpowered and powered walking to test the hypothesis that ankle plantarflexion requires more net metabolic power (W kg(-1)) at longer step lengths for a constant step frequency (i.e. preferred at 1.25 m s(-1)). As step length increased from 0.8 L(*) to 1.4 L(*), exoskeletons delivered approximately 25% more average positive mechanical power (P=0.01; +0.20+/-0.02 W kg(-1) to +0.25+/-0.02 W kg(-1), respectively). The exoskeletons reduced net metabolic power by more at longer step lengths (P=0.002; -0.21+/-0.06 W kg(-1) at 0.8 L(*) and -0.70+/-0.12 W kg(-1) at 1.4 L(*)). For every 1 J of exoskeleton positive mechanical work subjects saved 0.72 J of metabolic energy ('apparent efficiency'=1.39) at 0.8 L(*) and 2.6 J of metabolic energy ('apparent efficiency'=0.38) at 1.4 L(*). Declining ankle muscle-tendon ;apparent efficiency' suggests an increase in ankle plantar flexor muscle work relative to Achilles' tendon elastic energy recoil during walking with longer steps. However, previously stored elastic energy in Achilles' tendon still probably contributes up to 34% of ankle muscle-tendon positive work even at the longest step lengths we tested. Across the range of step lengths we studied, the human ankle muscle-tendon system performed 34-40% of the total lower-limb positive mechanical work but accounted for only 7-26% of

  5. Assessing the Relative Contributions of Active Ankle and Knee Assistance to the Walking Mechanics of Transfemoral Amputees Using a Powered Prosthesis

    PubMed Central

    Simon, Ann M.; Hargrove, Levi J.

    2016-01-01

    Powered knee-ankle prostheses are capable of providing net-positive mechanical energy to amputees. Yet, there are limitless ways to deliver this energy throughout the gait cycle. It remains largely unknown how different combinations of active knee and ankle assistance affect the walking mechanics of transfemoral amputees. This study assessed the relative contributions of stance phase knee swing initiation, increasing ankle stiffness and powered plantarflexion as three unilateral transfemoral amputees walked overground at their self-selected walking speed. Five combinations of knee and ankle conditions were evaluated regarding the kinematics and kinetics of the amputated and intact legs using repeated measures analyses of variance. We found eliminating active knee swing initiation or powered plantarflexion was linked to increased compensations of the ipsilateral hip joint during the subsequent swing phase. The elimination of knee swing initiation or powered plantarflexion also led to reduced braking ground reaction forces of the amputated and intact legs, and influenced both sagittal and frontal plane loading of the intact knee joint. Gradually increasing prosthetic ankle stiffness influenced the shape of the prosthetic ankle plantarflexion moment, more closely mirroring the intact ankle moment. Increasing ankle stiffness also corresponded to increased prosthetic ankle power generation (despite a similar maximum stiffness value across conditions) and increased braking ground reaction forces of the amputated leg. These findings further our understanding of how to deliver assistance with powered knee-ankle prostheses and the compensations that occur when specific aspects of assistance are added/removed. PMID:26807889

  6. Assessing the Relative Contributions of Active Ankle and Knee Assistance to the Walking Mechanics of Transfemoral Amputees Using a Powered Prosthesis.

    PubMed

    Ingraham, Kimberly A; Fey, Nicholas P; Simon, Ann M; Hargrove, Levi J

    2016-01-01

    Powered knee-ankle prostheses are capable of providing net-positive mechanical energy to amputees. Yet, there are limitless ways to deliver this energy throughout the gait cycle. It remains largely unknown how different combinations of active knee and ankle assistance affect the walking mechanics of transfemoral amputees. This study assessed the relative contributions of stance phase knee swing initiation, increasing ankle stiffness and powered plantarflexion as three unilateral transfemoral amputees walked overground at their self-selected walking speed. Five combinations of knee and ankle conditions were evaluated regarding the kinematics and kinetics of the amputated and intact legs using repeated measures analyses of variance. We found eliminating active knee swing initiation or powered plantarflexion was linked to increased compensations of the ipsilateral hip joint during the subsequent swing phase. The elimination of knee swing initiation or powered plantarflexion also led to reduced braking ground reaction forces of the amputated and intact legs, and influenced both sagittal and frontal plane loading of the intact knee joint. Gradually increasing prosthetic ankle stiffness influenced the shape of the prosthetic ankle plantarflexion moment, more closely mirroring the intact ankle moment. Increasing ankle stiffness also corresponded to increased prosthetic ankle power generation (despite a similar maximum stiffness value across conditions) and increased braking ground reaction forces of the amputated leg. These findings further our understanding of how to deliver assistance with powered knee-ankle prostheses and the compensations that occur when specific aspects of assistance are added/removed. PMID:26807889

  7. Analysis on the Load Carrying Mechanism Integrated as Heterogeneous Co-operative Manipulator in a Walking Wheelchair

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rajay Vedaraj, I. S.; Jain, Ritika; Rao, B. V. A.

    2014-07-01

    used for climbing stairs with three leg design and anlaysis were also done on the mechanism integrated to the system. Kinematics of the legs are analysed separately and the legs are designed to carry a maximum of 175kgs, which is sustained by the center leg and shared by the dual wing legs equally during the walking phase. In the proposed design, screwjack mechanism is used as the central leg to share the load and thus the analysis on the load sharing capability of the whole system is analysed and concluded in terms of failure modes.

  8. Quantum random walks without walking

    SciTech Connect

    Manouchehri, K.; Wang, J. B.

    2009-12-15

    Quantum random walks have received much interest due to their nonintuitive dynamics, which may hold the key to a new generation of quantum algorithms. What remains a major challenge is a physical realization that is experimentally viable and not limited to special connectivity criteria. We present a scheme for walking on arbitrarily complex graphs, which can be realized using a variety of quantum systems such as a Bose-Einstein condensate trapped inside an optical lattice. This scheme is particularly elegant since the walker is not required to physically step between the nodes; only flipping coins is sufficient.

  9. Experimental verification of a computational technique for determining ground reactions in human bipedal stance.

    PubMed

    Audu, Musa L; Kirsch, Robert F; Triolo, Ronald J

    2007-01-01

    We have developed a three-dimensional (3D) biomechanical model of human standing that enables us to study the mechanisms of posture and balance simultaneously in various directions in space. Since the two feet are on the ground, the system defines a kinematically closed-chain which has redundancy problems that cannot be resolved using the laws of mechanics alone. We have developed a computational (optimization) technique that avoids the problems with the closed-chain formulation thus giving users of such models the ability to make predictions of joint moments, and potentially, muscle activations using more sophisticated musculoskeletal models. This paper describes the experimental verification of the computational technique that is used to estimate the ground reaction vector acting on an unconstrained foot while the other foot is attached to the ground, thus allowing human bipedal standing to be analyzed as an open-chain system. The computational approach was verified in terms of its ability to predict lower extremity joint moments derived from inverse dynamic simulations performed on data acquired from four able-bodied volunteers standing in various postures on force platforms. Sensitivity analyses performed with model simulations indicated which ground reaction force (GRF) and center of pressure (COP) components were most critical for providing better estimates of the joint moments. Overall, the joint moments predicted by the optimization approach are strongly correlated with the joint moments computed using the experimentally measured GRF and COP (0.78 < or = r(2) < or = 0.99,median,0.96) with a best-fit that was not statistically different from a straight line with unity slope (experimental=computational results) for postures of the four subjects examined. These results indicate that this model-based technique can be relied upon to predict reasonable and consistent estimates of the joint moments using the predicted GRF and COP for most standing postures. PMID

  10. How is sagittal balance acquired during bipedal gait acquisition? Comparison of neonatal and adult pelves in three dimensions. Evolutionary implications.

    PubMed

    Tardieu, Christine; Bonneau, Noémie; Hecquet, Jérôme; Boulay, Christophe; Marty, Catherine; Legaye, Jean; Duval-Beaupère, Geneviève

    2013-08-01

    We compare adult and intact neonatal pelves, using a pelvic sagittal variable, the angle of sacral incidence, which presents significant correlations with vertebral curvature in adults and plays an important role in sagittal balance of the trunk on the lower limbs. Since the lumbar curvature develops in the child in association with gait acquisition, we expect a change in this angle during growth which could contribute to the acquisition of sagittal balance. To understand the mechanisms underlying the sagittal balance in the evolution of human bipedalism, we also measure the angle of incidence of hominid fossils. Fourty-seven landmarks were digitized on 50 adult and 19 intact neonatal pelves. We used a three-dimensional model of the pelvis (DE-VISU program) which calculates the angle of sacral incidence and related functional variables. Cross-sectional data from newborns and adults show that the angle of sacral incidence increases and becomes negatively correlated with the sacro-acetabular distance. During ontogeny the sacrum becomes curved, tends to sink down between the iliac blades as a wedge and moves backward in the sagittal plane relative to the acetabula, thus contributing to the backwards displacement of the center of gravity of the trunk. A chain of correlations links the degree of the sacral slope and of the angle of incidence, which is tightly linked with the lumbar lordosis. We sketch a model showing the coordinated changes occurring in the pelvis and vertebral column during the acquisition of bipedalism in infancy. In the australopithecine pelves, Sts 14 and AL 288-1, and in the Homo erectus Gona pelvis the angle of sacral incidence reaches the mean values of humans. Discussing the incomplete pelves of Ardipithecus ramidus, Australopithecus sediba and the Nariokotome Boy, we suggest how the functional linkage between pelvis and spine, observed in humans, could have emerged during hominid evolution. PMID:23838060

  11. The influence of wind resistance in running and walking and the mechanical efficiency of work against horizontal or vertical forces

    PubMed Central

    Pugh, L. G. C. E.

    1971-01-01

    1. O2 intakes were determined on subjects running and walking at various constant speeds, (a) against wind of up to 18·5 m/sec (37 knots) in velocity, and (b) on gradients ranging from 2 to 8%. 2. In running and walking against wind, O2 intakes increased as the square of wind velocity. 3. In running on gradients the relation of O2 intake and lifting work was linear and independent of speed. In walking on gradients the relation was linear at work rates above 300 kg m/min, but curvilinear at lower work rates. 4. In a 65 kg athlete running at 4·45 m/sec (marathon speed) V̇O2 increased from 3·0 l./min with minimal wind to 5·0 l./min at a wind velocity of 18·5 m/sec. The corresponding values for a 75 kg subject walking at 1·25 m/sec were 0·8 l./min with minimal wind and 3·1 l./min at a wind velocity of 18·5 m/sec. 5. Direct measurements of wind pressure on shapes of similar area to one of the subjects yielded higher values than those predicted from the relation of wind velocity and lifting work at equal O2 intakes. Horizontal work against wind was more efficient than vertical work against gravity. 6. The energy cost of overcoming air resistance in track running may be 7·5% of the total energy cost at middle distance speed and 13% at sprint speed. Running 1 m behind another runner virtually eliminated air resistance and reduced V̇O2 by 6·5% at middle distance speed. PMID:5574828

  12. The relative cost of bent-hip bent-knee walking is reduced in water.

    PubMed

    Kuliukas, Algis V; Milne, Nick; Fournier, Paul

    2009-01-01

    The debate about how early hominids walked may be characterised as two competing hypotheses: They moved with a fully upright (FU) gait, like modern humans, or with a bent-hip, bent-knee (BK) gait, like apes. Both have assumed that this bipedalism was almost exclusively on land, in trees or a combination of the two. Recent findings favoured the FU hypothesis by showing that the BK gait is 50-60% more energetically costly than a FU human gait on land. We confirm these findings but show that in water this cost differential is markedly reduced, especially in deeper water, at slower speeds and with greater knee flexion. These data suggest that the controversy about australopithecine locomotion may be eased if it is assumed that wading was a component of their locomotor repertoire and supports the idea that shallow water might have been an environment favourable to the evolution of early forms of "non-optimal" hominid bipedalism. PMID:19853850

  13. Quantum stochastic walks: A generalization of classical random walks and quantum walks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aspuru-Guzik, Alan

    2010-03-01

    We introduce the quantum stochastic walk (QSW), which determines the evolution of generalized quantum mechanical walk on a graph that obeys a quantum stochastic equation of motion. Using an axiomatic approach, we specify the rules for all possible quantum, classical and quantum-stochastic transitions from a vertex as defined by its connectivity. We show how the family of possible QSWs encompasses both the classical random walk (CRW) and the quantum walk (QW) as special cases, but also includes more general probability distributions. As an example, we study the QSW on a line, the QW to CRW transition and transitions to genearlized QSWs that go beyond the CRW and QW. QSWs provide a new framework to the study of quantum algorithms as well as of quantum walks with environmental effects.

  14. Hand before foot? Cortical somatotopy suggests manual dexterity is primitive and evolved independently of bipedalism

    PubMed Central

    Hashimoto, Teruo; Ueno, Kenichi; Ogawa, Akitoshi; Asamizuya, Takeshi; Suzuki, Chisato; Cheng, Kang; Tanaka, Michio; Taoka, Miki; Iwamura, Yoshiaki; Suwa, Gen; Iriki, Atsushi

    2013-01-01

    People have long speculated whether the evolution of bipedalism in early hominins triggered tool use (by freeing their hands) or whether the necessity of making and using tools encouraged the shift to upright gait. Either way, it is commonly thought that one led to the other. In this study, we sought to shed new light on the origins of manual dexterity and bipedalism by mapping the neural representations in the brain of the fingers and toes of living people and monkeys. Contrary to the ‘hand-in-glove’ notion outlined above, our results suggest that adaptations underlying tool use evolved independently of those required for human bipedality. In both humans and monkeys, we found that each finger was represented separately in the primary sensorimotor cortex just as they are physically separated in the hand. This reflects the ability to use each digit independently, as required for the complex manipulation involved in tool use. The neural mapping of the subjects’ toes differed, however. In the monkeys, the somatotopic representation of the toes was fused, showing that the digits function predominantly as a unit in general grasping. Humans, by contrast, had an independent neurological representation of the big toe (hallux), suggesting association with bipedal locomotion. These observations suggest that the brain circuits for the hand had advanced beyond simple grasping, whereas our primate ancestors were still general arboreal quadrupeds. This early adaptation laid the foundation for the evolution of manual dexterity, which was preserved and enhanced in hominins. In hominins, a separate adaptation, involving the neural separation of the big toe, apparently occurred with bipedality. This accords with the known fossil evidence, including the recently reported hominin fossils which have been dated to 4.4 million years ago. PMID:24101627

  15. Wading for food the driving force of the evolution of bipedalism?

    PubMed

    Kuliukas, Algis

    2002-01-01

    Evidence is accumulating that suggests that the large human brain is most likely to have evolved in littoral and estuarine habitats rich in naturally occurring essential fatty acids. This paper adds further weight to this view, suggesting that another key human trait, our bipedality might also be best explained as an adaptation to a water-side niche. Evidence is provided here that extant apes, although preferring to keep dry, go into water when driven to do so by hunger. The anecdotal evidence has suggested that they tend to do this bipedally. Here, a new empirical study of captive bonobos found them to exhibit 2% or less bipedality on the ground or in trees but over 90% when wading in water to collect food. The skeletal morphology of AL 288-1 ("Lucy") is shown to indicate a strong ability to abduct and adduct the femur. These traits, together with a remarkably platypelloid pelvis, have not yet been adequately explained by terrestrial or arboreal models for early bipedalism but are consistent with those expected in an ape that adopted a specialist side-to-side 'ice-skating' or sideways wading mode. It is argued that this explanation of A. afarensis locomotor morphology is more parsimonious than others which have plainly failed to produce a consensus. Microwear evidence of Australopithecus dentition is also presented as evidence that the drive for such a wading form of locomotion might well have been waterside foods. This model obtains further support from the paleo-habitats of the earliest known bipeds, which are consistent with the hypothesis that wading contributed to the adaptive pressure towards bipedality. PMID:12617279

  16. Hand before foot? Cortical somatotopy suggests manual dexterity is primitive and evolved independently of bipedalism.

    PubMed

    Hashimoto, Teruo; Ueno, Kenichi; Ogawa, Akitoshi; Asamizuya, Takeshi; Suzuki, Chisato; Cheng, Kang; Tanaka, Michio; Taoka, Miki; Iwamura, Yoshiaki; Suwa, Gen; Iriki, Atsushi

    2013-11-19

    People have long speculated whether the evolution of bipedalism in early hominins triggered tool use (by freeing their hands) or whether the necessity of making and using tools encouraged the shift to upright gait. Either way, it is commonly thought that one led to the other. In this study, we sought to shed new light on the origins of manual dexterity and bipedalism by mapping the neural representations in the brain of the fingers and toes of living people and monkeys. Contrary to the 'hand-in-glove' notion outlined above, our results suggest that adaptations underlying tool use evolved independently of those required for human bipedality. In both humans and monkeys, we found that each finger was represented separately in the primary sensorimotor cortex just as they are physically separated in the hand. This reflects the ability to use each digit independently, as required for the complex manipulation involved in tool use. The neural mapping of the subjects' toes differed, however. In the monkeys, the somatotopic representation of the toes was fused, showing that the digits function predominantly as a unit in general grasping. Humans, by contrast, had an independent neurological representation of the big toe (hallux), suggesting association with bipedal locomotion. These observations suggest that the brain circuits for the hand had advanced beyond simple grasping, whereas our primate ancestors were still general arboreal quadrupeds. This early adaptation laid the foundation for the evolution of manual dexterity, which was preserved and enhanced in hominins. In hominins, a separate adaptation, involving the neural separation of the big toe, apparently occurred with bipedality. This accords with the known fossil evidence, including the recently reported hominin fossils which have been dated to 4.4 million years ago. PMID:24101627

  17. Does Bipedality Predict the Group-Level Manual Laterality in Mammals?

    PubMed Central

    Giljov, Andrey; Karenina, Karina; Malashichev, Yegor

    2012-01-01

    Background Factors determining patterns of laterality manifestation in mammals remain unclear. In primates, the upright posture favours the expression of manual laterality across species, but may have little influence within a species. Whether the bipedalism acts the same in non-primate mammals is unknown. Our recent findings in bipedal and quadrupedal marsupials suggested that differences in laterality pattern, as well as emergence of manual specialization in evolution might depend on species-specific body posture. Here, we evaluated the hypothesis that the postural characteristics are the key variable shaping the manual laterality expression across mammalian species. Methodology/Principal Findings We studied forelimb preferences in a most bipedal marsupial, brush-tailed bettong, Bettongia penicillata in four different types of unimanual behavior. The significant left-forelimb preference at the group level was found in all behaviours studied. In unimanual feeding on non-living food, catching live prey and nest-material collecting, all or most subjects were lateralized, and among lateralized bettongs a significant majority displayed left-forelimb bias. Only in unimanual supporting of the body in the tripedal stance the distribution of lateralized and non-lateralized individuals did not differ from chance. Individual preferences were consistent across all types of behaviour. The direction or the strength of forelimb preferences were not affected by the animals’ sex. Conclusions/Significance Our findings support the hypothesis that the expression of manual laterality depends on the species-typical postural habit. The interspecies comparison illustrates that in marsupials the increase of bipedality corresponds with the increase of the degree of group-level forelimb preference in a species. Thus, bipedalism can predict pronounced manual laterality at both intra- and interspecific levels in mammals. We also conclude that quadrupedal position in biped species can

  18. The Human Shoulder Suspension Apparatus: A Causal Explanation for Bilateral Asymmetry and a Fresh Look at the Evolution of Human Bipedality.

    PubMed

    Osborn, Michelle L; Homberger, Dominique G

    2015-09-01

    The combination of large mastoid processes and clavicles is unique to humans, but the biomechanical and evolutionary significance of their special configuration is poorly understood. As part of the newly conceptualized shoulder suspension apparatus, the mastoid processes and clavicles are shaped by forces exerted by the musculo-fascial components of the cleidomastoid and clavotrapezius muscles as they suspend the shoulders from the head. Because both skeletal elements develop during infancy in tandem with the attainment of an upright posture, increased manual dexterity, and the capacity for walking, we hypothesized that the same forces would have shaped them as the shoulder suspension apparatus evolved in ancestral humans in tandem with an upright posture, increased manual dexterity, and bipedality with swinging arms. Because the shoulder suspension apparatus is subjected to asymmetrical forces from handedness, we predicted that its skeletal features would grow asymmetrically. We used this prediction to test our hypothesis in a natural experiment to correlate the size of the skeletal features with the forces exerted on them. We (1) measured biomechanically relevant bony features within the shoulder suspension apparatus in 101 male human specimens (62 of known handedness); and (2) modeled and analyzed the forces within the shoulder suspension apparatus from X-ray CT data. We identified eight right-handed characters and demonstrated the causal relationship between these right-handed characters and the magnitude and direction of forces acting on them. Our data suggest that the presence of the shoulder suspension apparatus in humans was a necessary precondition for human bipedality. PMID:26054034

  19. Phase-dependent reversal of the crossed conditioning effect on the soleus Hoffmann reflex from cutaneous afferents during walking in humans.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Shinya; Nakajima, Tsuyoshi; Futatsubashi, Genki; Mezzarane, Rinaldo A; Ohtsuka, Hiroyuki; Ohki, Yukari; Komiyama, Tomoyoshi

    2016-02-01

    We previously demonstrated that non-noxious electrical stimulation of the cutaneous nerve innervating the contralateral foot modified the excitability of the Hoffmann (H-) reflex in the soleus muscle (SOL) in a task-dependent manner during standing and walking in humans. To date, however, it remains unclear how the crossed conditioning effect on the SOL H-reflex from the contralateral foot is modified during the various phases of walking. We sought to answer this question in the present study. The SOL H-reflex was evoked in healthy volunteers by an electrical test stimulation (TS) of the right (ipsilateral) posterior tibial nerve at five different phases during treadmill walking (4 km/h). A non-noxious electrical stimulation was delivered to the superficial peroneal nerve of the left (contralateral) ankle ~100 ms before the TS as a conditioning stimulation (CS). This CS significantly suppressed the H-reflex amplitude during the early stance phase, whereas the same CS significantly facilitated the H-reflex amplitude during the late stance phase. The CS alone did not produce detectable changes in the full-wave rectified electromyogram of the SOL. This result indicates that presynaptic mechanisms driven by the activation of low-threshold cutaneous afferents in the contralateral foot play a role in regulating the transmission between the Ia terminal and motoneurons in a phase-dependent manner. The modulation pattern of the crossed conditioning effect on the SOL H-reflex may be functionally relevant for the left-right coordination of leg movements during bipedal walking. PMID:26573576

  20. The walking robot project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Williams, P.; Sagraniching, E.; Bennett, M.; Singh, R.

    1991-01-01

    A walking robot was designed, analyzed, and tested as an intelligent, mobile, and a terrain adaptive system. The robot's design was an application of existing technologies. The design of the six legs modified and combines well understood mechanisms and was optimized for performance, flexibility, and simplicity. The body design incorporated two tripods for walking stability and ease of turning. The electrical hardware design used modularity and distributed processing to drive the motors. The software design used feedback to coordinate the system and simple keystrokes to give commands. The walking machine can be easily adapted to hostile environments such as high radiation zones and alien terrain. The primary goal of the leg design was to create a leg capable of supporting a robot's body and electrical hardware while walking or performing desired tasks, namely those required for planetary exploration. The leg designers intent was to study the maximum amount of flexibility and maneuverability achievable by the simplest and lightest leg design. The main constraints for the leg design were leg kinematics, ease of assembly, degrees of freedom, number of motors, overall size, and weight.

  1. The biomechanics of walking shape the use of visual information during locomotion over complex terrain.

    PubMed

    Matthis, Jonathan Samir; Barton, Sean L; Fajen, Brett R

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this study was to examine how visual information is used to control stepping during locomotion over terrain that demands precision in the placement of the feet. More specifically, we sought to determine the point in the gait cycle at which visual information about a target is no longer needed to guide accurate foot placement. Subjects walked along a path while stepping as accurately as possible on a series of small, irregularly spaced target footholds. In various conditions, each of the targets became invisible either during the step to the target or during the step to the previous target. We found that making targets invisible after toe off of the step to the target had little to no effect on stepping accuracy. However, when targets disappeared during the step to the previous target, foot placement became less accurate and more variable. The findings suggest that visual information about a target is used prior to initiation of the step to that target but is not needed to continuously guide the foot throughout the swing phase. We propose that this style of control is rooted in the biomechanics of walking, which facilitates an energetically efficient strategy in which visual information is primarily used to initialize the mechanical state of the body leading into a ballistic movement toward the target foothold. Taken together with previous studies, the findings suggest the availability of visual information about the terrain near a particular step is most essential during the latter half of the preceding step, which constitutes a critical control phase in the bipedal gait cycle. PMID:25788704

  2. The biomechanics of walking shape the use of visual information during locomotion over complex terrain

    PubMed Central

    Matthis, Jonathan Samir; Barton, Sean L.; Fajen, Brett R.

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this study was to examine how visual information is used to control stepping during locomotion over terrain that demands precision in the placement of the feet. More specifically, we sought to determine the point in the gait cycle at which visual information about a target is no longer needed to guide accurate foot placement. Subjects walked along a path while stepping as accurately as possible on a series of small, irregularly spaced target footholds. In various conditions, each of the targets became invisible either during the step to the target or during the step to the previous target. We found that making targets invisible after toe off of the step to the target had little to no effect on stepping accuracy. However, when targets disappeared during the step to the previous target, foot placement became less accurate and more variable. The findings suggest that visual information about a target is used prior to initiation of the step to that target but is not needed to continuously guide the foot throughout the swing phase. We propose that this style of control is rooted in the biomechanics of walking, which facilitates an energetically efficient strategy in which visual information is primarily used to initialize the mechanical state of the body leading into a ballistic movement toward the target foothold. Taken together with previous studies, the findings suggest the availability of visual information about the terrain near a particular step is most essential during the latter half of the preceding step, which constitutes a critical control phase in the bipedal gait cycle. PMID:25788704

  3. Coordination of push-off and collision determine the mechanical work of step-to-step transitions when isolated from human walking.

    PubMed

    Soo, Caroline H; Donelan, J Maxwell

    2012-02-01

    In human walking, each transition to a new stance limb requires redirection of the center of mass (COM) velocity from one inverted pendulum arc to the next. While this can be accomplished with either negative collision work by the leading limb, positive push-off work by the trailing limb, or some combination of the two, physics-based models of step-to-step transitions predict that total positive work is minimized when the push-off and collision work are equal in magnitude. Here, we tested the importance of the coordination of push-off and collision work in determining transition work using ankle and knee joint braces to limit the ability of a leg to perform positive work on the body. To isolate transitions from other contributors to walking mechanics, participants were instructed to rock back and forth from one leg to the other, restricting motion to the sagittal plane and eliminating the need to swing the legs. We found that reduced push-off work increased the collision work required to complete the redirection of the COM velocity during each transition. A greater amount of total mechanical work was required when rocking departed from the predicted optimal coordination of step-to-step transitions, in which push-off and collision work are equal in magnitude. Our finding that transition work increases if one or both legs do not push-off with the optimal coordination may help explain the elevated metabolic cost of pathological gait irrespective of etiology. PMID:22030156

  4. Walking Robot Locomotion System Conception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ignatova, D.; Abadjieva, E.; Abadjiev, V.; Vatzkitchev, Al.

    2014-09-01

    This work is a brief analysis on the application and perspective of using the walking robots in different areas in practice. The most common characteristics of walking four legs robots are presented here. The specific features of the applied actuators in walking mechanisms are also shown in the article. The experience of Institute of Mechanics - BAS is illustrated in creation of Spiroid and Helicon1 gears and their assembly in actuation of studied robots. Loading on joints reductors of robot legs is modelled, when the geometrical and the walking parameters of the studied robot are preliminary defined. The obtained results are purposed for designing the control of the loading of reductor type Helicon in the legs of the robot, when it is experimentally tested.

  5. Mechanical Perturbations of the Walking Surface Reveal Unaltered Axial Trunk Stiffness in Chronic Low Back Pain Patients

    PubMed Central

    Meijer, Onno G.

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Patients with chronic low back pain (CLBP) often demonstrate altered timing of thorax rotations in the transverse plane during gait. Increased axial trunk stiffness has been claimed to cause this movement pattern. Objectives The objective of this study was to assess whether axial trunk stiffness is increased in gait in CLBP patients. Methods 15 CLBP patients and 15 healthy controls walked on a treadmill that imposed rotational perturbations in the transverse plane. The effect of these perturbations on transverse pelvis, thorax and trunk (thorax relative to pelvis) rotations was evaluated in terms of residual rotations, i.e., the deviation of these movements from the unperturbed patterns. In view of the heterogeneity of the CLBP group, we additionally performed a subgroup comparison between seven patients and seven controls with maximal between-group contrast for timing of thorax rotations. Results Rotations of the walking surface had a clear effect on transverse pelvis, thorax and trunk rotations in all groups. No significant between-group differences on residual transverse pelvis, thorax and trunk rotations were observed. Conclusion Axial trunk stiffness in gait does not appear to be increased in CLBP. Altered timing of thorax rotations in CLBP does not seem to be a result of increased axial trunk stiffness. PMID:27310528

  6. Online Running Trajectory Planning for Bipedal Robots based on ZMP and Euler's Equations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ugurlu, Barkan; Kawamura, Atsuo

    This paper is presenting a method to generate online running trajectories that can be applied to bipedal humanoid robots. The proposed method is based on maintaining the overall dynamic balance by using the ZMP stability criterion throughout support phases. To be able to reach this goal, we utilize ZMP equations in spherical coordinates, so that the rate change of angular momentum terms in ZMP equations are included naturally by using Eulerian equations of motion for unsymmetrical bodies. Thus, undesired torso angle fluctuation is expected to be more restrainable comparing to other methods in which angular momentum information is ignored or zero-referenced. Moreover, we employ projectile motion dynamics throughout flight phases. Applying the aforementioned technique, we simulated bipedal running motion on a dynamic 3-D simulator. In conclusion, we obtained repetitive and successful running cycles which consistently verify the proposed method.

  7. Possible functional roles of phase resetting during walking.

    PubMed

    Yamasaki, Taiga; Nomura, Taishin; Sato, Shunsuke

    2003-06-01

    The walking rhythm is known to show phase shift or "reset" in response to external impulsive perturbations. We tried to elucidate functional roles of the phase reset possibly used for the neural control of locomotion. To this end, a system with a double pendulum as a simplified model of the locomotor control and a model of bipedal locomotion were employed and analyzed in detail. In these models, a movement corresponding to the normal steady-state walking was realized as a stable limit cycle solution of the system. Unexpected external perturbations applied to the system can push the state point of the system away from its limit cycle, either outside or inside the basin of attraction of the limit cycle. Our mathematical analyses of the models suggested functional roles of the phase reset during walking as follows. Function 1: an appropriate amount of the phase reset for a given perturbation can contribute to relocating the system's state point outside the basin of attraction of the limit cycle back to the inside. Function 2: it can also be useful to reduce the convergence time (the time necessary for the state point to return to the limit cycle). In experimental studies during walking of animals and humans, the reset of walking rhythm induced by perturbations was investigated using the phase transition curve (PTC) or the phase resetting curve (PRC) representing phase-dependent responses of the walking. We showed, for the simple double-pendulum model, the existence of the optimal phase control and the corresponding PTC that could optimally realize the aforementioned functions in response to impulsive force perturbations. Moreover, possible forms of PRC that can avoid falling against the force perturbations were predicted by the biped model, and they were compared with the experimentally observed PRC during human walking. Finally, physiological implications of the results were discussed. PMID:12789495

  8. Multi-muscle control during bipedal stance: an EMG-EMG analysis approach.

    PubMed

    Danna-Dos-Santos, Alessander; Boonstra, Tjeerd W; Degani, Adriana M; Cardoso, Vinicius S; Magalhaes, Alessandra T; Mochizuki, Luis; Leonard, Charles T

    2014-01-01

    Posture and postural reactions to mechanical perturbations require the harmonic modulation of the activity of multiple muscles. This precision can become suboptimal in the presence of neuromuscular disorders and result in higher fall risk and associated levels of comorbidity. This study was designed to investigate neurophysiological principles related to the generation and distribution of inputs to skeletal muscles previously recognized as a synergistic group. Specifically, we investigated the current hypothesis that correlated neural inputs, as measured by intermuscular coherence, are the mechanism used by the central nervous system to coordinate the formation of postural muscle synergies. This hypothesis was investigated by analyzing the strength and distribution of correlated neural inputs to postural muscles during the execution of a quiet stance task. Nine participants, 4 females and 5 males, mean age 29.2 years old (±6.1 SD), performed the task of standing while holding a 5-kg barbell in front of their bodies at chest level. Subjects were asked to maintain a standing position for 10 s while the activity of three postural muscles was recorded by surface electrodes: soleus (SOL), biceps femoris (BF), and lumbar erector spinae (ERE). EMG-EMG coherence was estimated for three muscle pairs (SOL/BF, SOL/ERE, and BF/ERE). Our choice of studying these muscles was made based on the fact that they have been reported as components of a functional (synergistic) muscle group that emerges during the execution of bipedal stance. In addition, an isometric contraction can be easily induced in this muscle group by simply adding a weight to the body's anterior aspect. The experimental condition elicited a significant increase in muscle activation levels for all three muscles (p < 0.01 for all muscles). EMG-EMG coherence analysis revealed significant coherence within two distinct frequency bands, 0-5 and 5-20 Hz. Significant coherence within the later frequency band was also

  9. Two families with quadrupedalism, mental retardation, no speech, and infantile hypotonia (Uner Tan Syndrome Type-II); a novel theory for the evolutionary emergence of human bipedalism.

    PubMed

    Tan, Uner

    2014-01-01

    Two consanguineous families with Uner Tan Syndrome (UTS) were analyzed in relation to self-organizing processes in complex systems, and the evolutionary emergence of human bipedalism. The cases had the key symptoms of previously reported cases of UTS, such as quadrupedalism, mental retardation, and dysarthric or no speech, but the new cases also exhibited infantile hypotonia and are designated UTS Type-II. There were 10 siblings in Branch I and 12 siblings in Branch II. Of these, there were seven cases exhibiting habitual quadrupedal locomotion (QL): four deceased and three living. The infantile hypotonia in the surviving cases gradually disappeared over a period of years, so that they could sit by about 10 years, crawl on hands and knees by about 12 years. They began walking on all fours around 14 years, habitually using QL. Neurological examinations showed normal tonus in their arms and legs, no Babinski sign, brisk tendon reflexes especially in the legs, and mild tremor. The patients could not walk in a straight line, but (except in one case) could stand up and maintain upright posture with truncal ataxia. Cerebello-vermial hypoplasia and mild gyral simplification were noted in their MRIs. The results of the genetic analysis were inconclusive: no genetic code could be identified as the triggering factor for the syndrome in these families. Instead, the extremely low socio-economic status of the patients was thought to play a role in the emergence of UTS, possibly by epigenetically changing the brain structure and function, with a consequent selection of ancestral neural networks for QL during locomotor development. It was suggested that UTS may be regarded as one of the unpredictable outcomes of self-organization within a complex system. It was also noted that the prominent feature of this syndrome, the diagonal-sequence habitual QL, generated an interference between ipsilateral hands and feet, as in non-human primates. It was suggested that this may have been

  10. Optimal bipedal interactions with dynamic terrain: synthesis and analysis via nonlinear programming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hubicki, Christian; Goldman, Daniel; Ames, Aaron

    In terrestrial locomotion, gait dynamics and motor control behaviors are tuned to interact efficiently and stably with the dynamics of the terrain (i.e. terradynamics). This controlled interaction must be particularly thoughtful in bipeds, as their reduced contact points render them highly susceptible to falls. While bipedalism under rigid terrain assumptions is well-studied, insights for two-legged locomotion on soft terrain, such as sand and dirt, are comparatively sparse. We seek an understanding of how biological bipeds stably and economically negotiate granular media, with an eye toward imbuing those abilities in bipedal robots. We present a trajectory optimization method for controlled systems subject to granular intrusion. By formulating a large-scale nonlinear program (NLP) with reduced-order resistive force theory (RFT) models and jamming cone dynamics, the optimized motions are informed and shaped by the dynamics of the terrain. Using a variant of direct collocation methods, we can express all optimization objectives and constraints in closed-form, resulting in rapid solving by standard NLP solvers, such as IPOPT. We employ this tool to analyze emergent features of bipedal locomotion in granular media, with an eye toward robotic implementation.

  11. Effect of walking speed on the gait of king penguins: An accelerometric approach.

    PubMed

    Willener, Astrid S T; Handrich, Yves; Halsey, Lewis G; Strike, Siobhán

    2015-12-21

    Little is known about non-human bipedal gaits. This is probably due to the fact that most large animals are quadrupedal and that non-human bipedal animals are mostly birds, whose primary form of locomotion is flight. Very little research has been conducted on penguin pedestrian locomotion with the focus instead on their associated high energy expenditure. In animals, tri-axial accelerometers are frequently used to estimate physiological energy cost, as well as to define the behaviour pattern of a species, or the kinematics of swimming. In this study, we showed how an accelerometer-based technique could be used to determine the biomechanical characteristics of pedestrian locomotion. Eight king penguins, which represent the only family of birds to have an upright bipedal gait, were trained to walk on a treadmill. The trunk tri-axial accelerations were recorded while the bird was walking at four different speeds (1.0, 1.2, 1.4 and 1.6km/h), enabling the amplitude of dynamic body acceleration along the three axes (amplitude of DBAx, DBAy and DBAz), stride frequency, waddling and leaning amplitude, as well as the leaning angle to be defined. The magnitude of the measured variables showed a significant increase with increasing speed, apart from the backwards angle of lean, which decreased with increasing speed. The variability of the measured variables also showed a significant increase with speed apart from the DBAz amplitude, the waddling amplitude, and the leaning angle, where no significant effect of the walking speed was found. This paper is the first approach to describe 3D biomechanics with an accelerometer on wild animals, demonstrating the potential of this technique. PMID:26427338

  12. Complementarity and quantum walks

    SciTech Connect

    Kendon, Viv; Sanders, Barry C.

    2005-02-01

    We show that quantum walks interpolate between a coherent 'wave walk' and a random walk depending on how strongly the walker's coin state is measured; i.e., the quantum walk exhibits the quintessentially quantum property of complementarity, which is manifested as a tradeoff between knowledge of which path the walker takes vs the sharpness of the interference pattern. A physical implementation of a quantum walk (the quantum quincunx) should thus have an identifiable walker and the capacity to demonstrate the interpolation between wave walk and random walk depending on the strength of measurement.

  13. Unertan syndrome: a new variant of Unertan syndrome: running on all fours in two upright-walking children.

    PubMed

    Tan, Uner; Tan, Meliha

    2009-01-01

    A new variant of Unertan Syndrome (UTS) is described in two Turkish children who exhibit both bipedal and quadrupedal locomotion and have normal cognitive abilities, including speech and intelligence. Quadrupedal locomotion was used by these individuals for rapid motivity when needed. An X-linked autosomal recessive transmission appears to be responsible for the UTS trait, with no intrafamilial marriages. The children did not show any neurological signs and symptoms except for a positive Babinski sign and an inability to perform a tandem walk. The results suggest that quadrupedality may result from using ancestral neural networks when needed. The preference for the quadrupedal gait as a hidden skill may be an example of learned dynamical adaptation to limited motor control, pointing out a phase transition in system dynamical terms. Human quadrupedality may have important consequences regarding human evolution with respect to the transition from quadrupedalism to bipedalism, which is generally recognized as important trait in the hominization process during human evolution. PMID:19466629

  14. Fire-walking

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Willey, David

    2010-09-01

    This article gives a brief history of fire-walking and then deals with the physics behind fire-walking. The author has performed approximately 50 fire-walks, took the data for the world's hottest fire-walk and was, at one time, a world record holder for the longest fire-walk (www.dwilley.com/HDATLTW/Record_Making_Firewalks.html). He currently teaches Physics for the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown, USA.

  15. Fire-Walking

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Willey, David

    2010-01-01

    This article gives a brief history of fire-walking and then deals with the physics behind fire-walking. The author has performed approximately 50 fire-walks, took the data for the world's hottest fire-walk and was, at one time, a world record holder for the longest fire-walk (www.dwilley.com/HDATLTW/Record_Making_Firewalks.html). He currently…

  16. Positive messaging promotes walking in older adults

    PubMed Central

    Notthoff, Nanna; Carstensen, Laura L.

    2014-01-01

    Walking is among the most cost-effective and accessible means of exercise. Mounting evidence suggests that walking may help to maintain physical and cognitive independence in old age by preventing a variety of health problems. However, older Americans fall far short of meeting the daily recommendations for walking. In two studies, we examined whether considering older adults’ preferential attention to positive information may effectively enhance interventions aimed at promoting walking. In Study 1, we compared the effectiveness of positive, negative, and neutral messages to encourage walking (as measured with pedometers). Older adults who were informed about the benefits of walking walked more than those who were informed about the negative consequences of failing to walk, whereas younger adults were unaffected by framing valence. In Study 2, we examined within-person change in walking in older adults in response to positively- or negatively-framed messages over a 28-day period. Once again, positively-framed messages more effectively promoted walking than negatively-framed messages, and the effect was sustained across the intervention period. Together, these studies suggest that consideration of age-related changes in preferences for positive and negative information may inform the design of effective interventions to promote healthy lifestyles. Future research is needed to examine the mechanisms underlying the greater effectiveness of positively as opposed to negatively framed messages and the generalizability of findings to other intervention targets and other subpopulations of older adults. PMID:24956001

  17. New bifurcations in the simplest passive walking model.

    PubMed

    Li, Qingdu; Tang, Song; Yang, Xiao-Song

    2013-12-01

    This paper uncovers several new stable periodic gaits in the simplest passive walking bipedal model proposed in the literature. It is demonstrated that the model has period-3 to period-7 gaits beside the period-1 gaits found by Garcia et al. By simulations, this paper shows that each of these new gaits leads to chaos via period-doubling bifurcation and loses its stability by cyclic-fold bifurcation. This interesting phenomenon suggests a series of new bifurcation scenarios that have not been observed before. To confirm the new gaits and their bifurcations, this paper presents computer assisted proofs on the existence and stability of each periodic gait and its period-doubling gaits with the interval Newton method. To verify that the routes indeed lead to chaos, computer-assisted proofs are also given by means of topological horseshoes theory. PMID:24387549

  18. Analysis of the human and ape foot during bipedal standing with implications for the evolution of the foot.

    PubMed

    Wang, W J; Crompton, R H

    2004-12-01

    The ratio of the power arm (the distance from the heel to the talocrural joint) to the load arm (that from the talocrural joint to the distal head of the metatarsals), or RPL, differs markedly between the human and ape foot. The arches are relatively higher in the human foot in comparison with those in apes. This study evaluates the effect of these two differences on biomechanical effectiveness during bipedal standing, estimating the forces acting across the talocrural and tarsometatarsal joints, and attempts to identify which type of foot is optimal for bipedal standing. A simple model of the foot musculoskeletal system was built to represent the geometric and force relationships in the foot during bipedal standing, and measurements for a variety of human and ape feet applied. The results show that: (1) an RPL of around 40% (as is the case in the human foot) minimizes required muscle force at the talocrural joint; (2) the presence of an high arch in the human foot reduces forces in the plantar musculature and aponeurosis; and (3) the human foot has a lower total of force in joints and muscles than do the ape feet. These results indicate that the proportions of the human foot, and the height of the medial arch are indeed better optimized for bipedal standing than those of apes, further suggesting that their current state is to some extent the product of positive selection for enhanced bipedal standing during the evolution of the foot. PMID:15519591

  19. Feeding strategies as revealed by the section moduli of the humerus bones in bipedal theropod dinosaurs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Scott; Richards, Zachary

    2015-03-01

    The section modulus of a bone is a measure of its ability to resist bending torques. Carnivorous dinosaurs presumably had strong arm bones to hold struggling prey during hunting. Some theropods are believed to have become herbivorous and such animals would not have needed such strong arms. In this work, the section moduli of the humerus bones of bipedal theropod dinosaurs (from Microvenator celer to Tyrannosaurus rex) are studied to determine the maximum bending loads their arms could withstand. The results show that bending strength is not of uniform importance to these magnificent animals. The predatory theropods had strong arms for use in hunting. In contrast, the herbivorous dinosaurs had weaker arms.

  20. Continuous limit of discrete quantum walks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    M N, Dheeraj; Brun, Todd A.

    2015-06-01

    Quantum walks can be defined in two quite distinct ways: discrete-time and continuous-time quantum walks (DTQWs and CTQWs). For classical random walks, there is a natural sense in which continuous-time walks are a limit of discrete-time walks. Quantum mechanically, in the discrete-time case, an additional "coin space" must be appended for the walk to have nontrivial time evolution. Continuous-time quantum walks, however, have no such constraints. This means that there is no completely straightforward way to treat a CTQW as a limit of a DTQW, as can be done in the classical case. Various approaches to this problem have been taken in the past. We give a construction for walks on d -regular, d -colorable graphs when the coin flip operator is Hermitian: from a standard DTQW we construct a family of discrete-time walks with a well-defined continuous-time limit on a related graph. One can think of this limit as a "coined" continuous-time walk. We show that these CTQWs share some properties with coined DTQWs. In particular, we look at a spatial search by a DTQW over the two-dimensional (2D) torus (a grid with periodic boundary conditions) of size √{N }×√{N } , where it was shown that a coined DTQW can search in time O (√{N }logN ) , but a standard CTQW takes Ω (N ) time to search for a marked element. The continuous limit of the DTQW search over the 2D torus exhibits the O (√{N }logN ) scaling, like the coined walk it is derived from. We also look at the effects of graph symmetry on the limiting walk, and show that the properties are similar to those of the DTQW as shown in Krovi and Brun, Phys. Rev. A 75, 062332 (2007), 10.1103/PhysRevA.75.062332.

  1. Quantum walk computation

    SciTech Connect

    Kendon, Viv

    2014-12-04

    Quantum versions of random walks have diverse applications that are motivating experimental implementations as well as theoretical studies. Recent results showing quantum walks are “universal for quantum computation” relate to algorithms, to be run on quantum computers. We consider whether an experimental implementation of a quantum walk could provide useful computation before we have a universal quantum computer.

  2. Walking Wellness. Student Workbook.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sweetgall, Robert; Neeves, Robert

    This comprehensive student text and workbook, for grades four through eight, contains 16 workshop units focusing on walking field trips, aerobic pacing concepts, walking techniques, nutrition, weight control and healthy life-style planning. Co-ordinated homework assignments are included. The appendixes include 10 tips for walking, a calorie chart,…

  3. Walk This Way

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mason, Nick

    2007-01-01

    A generation ago, it was part of growing up for all kids when they biked or walked to school. But in the last 30 years, heavier traffic, wider roads and more dangerous intersections have made it riskier for students walking or pedaling. Today, fewer than 15 percent of kids bike or walk to school compared with more than 50 percent in 1969. In the…

  4. Bipedality and hair loss in human evolution revisited: The impact of altitude and activity scheduling.

    PubMed

    Dávid-Barrett, Tamás; Dunbar, Robin I M

    2016-05-01

    Bipedality evolved early in hominin evolution, and at some point was associated with hair loss over most of the body. One classic explanation (Wheeler 1984: J. Hum. Evol. 13, 91-98) was that these traits evolved to reduce heat overload when australopiths were foraging in more open tropical habitats where they were exposed to the direct effects of sunlight at midday. A recent critique of this model (Ruxton & Wilkinson 2011a: Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 108, 20965-20969) argued that it ignored the endogenous costs of heat generated by locomotion, and concluded that only hair loss provided a significant reduction in heat load. We add two crucial corrections to this model (the altitude at which australopiths actually lived and activity scheduling) and show that when these are included there are substantial reductions in heat load for bipedal locomotion even for furred animals. In addition, we add one further consideration to the model: we extend the analysis across the full 24 h day, and show that fur loss could not have evolved until much later because of the thermoregulatory costs this would have incurred at the altitudes where australopiths actually lived. Fur loss is most likely associated with the exploitation of open habitats at much lower altitudes at a much later date by the genus Homo. PMID:27178459

  5. How Fast Can a Human Run? − Bipedal vs. Quadrupedal Running

    PubMed Central

    Kinugasa, Ryuta; Usami, Yoshiyuki

    2016-01-01

    Usain Bolt holds the current world record in the 100-m run, with a running time of 9.58 s, and has been described as the best human sprinter in history. However, this raises questions concerning the maximum human running speed, such as “Can the world’s fastest men become faster still?” The correct answer is likely “Yes.” We plotted the historical world records for bipedal and quadrupedal 100-m sprint times according to competition year. These historical records were plotted using several curve-fitting procedures. We found that the projected speeds intersected in 2048, when for the first time, the winning quadrupedal 100-m sprint time could be lower, at 9.276 s, than the winning bipedal time of 9.383 s. Video analysis revealed that in quadrupedal running, humans employed a transverse gallop with a small angular excursion. These results suggest that in the future, the fastest human on the planet might be a quadrupedal runner at the 2048 Olympics. This may be achieved by shifting up to the rotary gallop and taking longer strides with wide sagittal trunk motion. PMID:27446911

  6. Lucy's lower limbs: long enough for Lucy to be fully bipedal?

    PubMed

    Wolpoff, M H

    The recent attempt to show that the Hadar australopithecine female 'Lucy' (AL 288-1) had hindlimbs too short to allow a modern pattern of striding bipedal gait has important implications for understanding the origin of bipedalism, if not for the more general problem of hominid origins. Combined with previous claims that Lucy had a forelimb unusually long in proportion and ape-like in morphology, the additional contention of a relatively short hindlimb would suggest a very different pattern of gait from the norm of today because the effectiveness of the pendulum action of the lower limb during stride is a function of the amount of mass in the limb, and because a short hindlimb would necessitate a short stride length. Yet, these contentions seem contradicted by the analyses of Lucy's pelvis (and the innominates of other australopithecines) that indicate a similar pattern of muscle use and imply a lack of significant gait differences. Are Lucy's legs too short to allow an effective stride, or is there a different solution to this contradiction? I propose here that there is. PMID:6408483

  7. Locomotion by Abdopus aculeatus (Cephalopoda: Octopodidae): walking the line between primary and secondary defenses.

    PubMed

    Huffard, Christine L

    2006-10-01

    Speeds and variation in body form during crawling, bipedal walking, swimming and jetting by the shallow-water octopus Abdopus aculeatus were compared to explore possible interactions between defense behaviors and biomechanics of these multi-limbed organisms. General body postures and patterns were more complex and varied during the slow mode of crawling than during fast escape maneuvers such as swimming and jetting. These results may reflect a trade-off between predator deception and speed, or simply a need to reduce drag during jet-propelled locomotion. Octopuses swam faster when dorsoventrally compressed, a form that may generate lift, than when swimming in the head-raised posture. Bipedal locomotion proceeded as fast as swimming and can be considered a form of fast escape (secondary defense) that also incorporates elements of crypsis and polyphenism (primary defenses). Body postures during walking suggested the use of both static and dynamic stability. Absolute speed was not correlated with body mass in any mode. Based on these findings the implications for defense behaviors such as escape from predation, aggression, and 'flatfish mimicry' performed by A. aculeatus and other octopuses are discussed. PMID:16985187

  8. Beam walking can detect differences in walking balance proficiency across a range of sensorimotor abilities.

    PubMed

    Sawers, Andrew; Ting, Lena H

    2015-02-01

    The ability to quantify differences in walking balance proficiency is critical to curbing the rising health and financial costs of falls. Current laboratory-based approaches typically focus on successful recovery of balance while clinical instruments often pose little difficulty for all but the most impaired patients. Rarely do they test motor behaviors of sufficient difficulty to evoke failures in balance control limiting their ability to quantify balance proficiency. Our objective was to test whether a simple beam-walking task could quantify differences in walking balance proficiency across a range of sensorimotor abilities. Ten experts, ten novices, and five individuals with transtibial limb loss performed six walking trials across three different width beams. Walking balance proficiency was quantified as the ratio of distance walked to total possible distance. Balance proficiency was not significantly different between cohorts on the wide-beam, but clear differences between cohorts on the mid and narrow-beams were identified. Experts walked a greater distance than novices on the mid-beam (average of 3.63±0.04m verus 2.70±0.21m out of 3.66m; p=0.009), and novices walked further than amputees (1.52±0.20m; p=0.03). Amputees were unable to walk on the narrow-beam, while experts walked further (3.07±0.14m) than novices (1.55±0.26m; p=0.0005). A simple beam-walking task and an easily collected measure of distance traveled detected differences in walking balance proficiency across sensorimotor abilities. This approach provides a means to safely study and evaluate successes and failures in walking balance in the clinic or lab. It may prove useful in identifying mechanisms underlying falls versus fall recoveries. PMID:25648493

  9. Walk Score®

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Scott C.; Pantin, Hilda; Lombard, Joanna; Toro, Matthew; Huang, Shi; Plater-Zyberk, Elizabeth; Perrino, Tatiana; Perez-Gomez, Gianna; Barrera-Allen, Lloyd; Szapocznik, José

    2013-01-01

    Background Walk Score® is a nationally and publicly available metric of neighborhood walkability based on proximity to amenities (e.g., retail, food, schools). However, few studies have examined the relationship of Walk Score to walking behavior. Purpose To examine the relationship of Walk Score to walking behavior in a sample of recent Cuban immigrants, who overwhelmingly report little choice in their selection of neighborhood built environments when they arrive in the U.S. Methods Participants were 391 recent healthy Cuban immigrants (M age=37.1 years) recruited within 90 days of arrival in the U.S., and assessed within 4 months of arrival (M=41.0 days in the U.S.), who resided throughout Miami-Dade County FL. Data on participants’ addresses, walking and sociodemographics were collected prospectively from 2008 to 2010. Analyses conducted in 2011 examined the relationship of Walk Score for each participant’s residential address in the U.S. to purposive walking, controlling for age, gender, education, BMI, days in the U.S., and habitual physical activity level in Cuba. Results For each 10-point increase in Walk Score, adjusting for covariates, there was a significant 19% increase in the likelihood of purposive walking, a 26% increase in the likelihood of meeting physical activity recommendations by walking, and 27% more minutes walked in the previous week. Conclusions Results suggest that Walk Score is associated with walking in a sample of recent immigrants who initially had little choice in where they lived in the U.S. These results support existing guidelines indicating that mixed land use (such as parks and restaurants near homes) should be included when designing walkable communities. PMID:23867028

  10. Water-walking devices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, David L.; Prakash, Manu; Chan, Brian; Bush, John W. M.

    2007-11-01

    We report recent efforts in the design and construction of water-walking machines inspired by insects and spiders. The fundamental physical constraints on the size, proportion and dynamics of natural water-walkers are enumerated and used as design criteria for analogous mechanical devices. We report devices capable of rowing along the surface, leaping off the surface and climbing menisci by deforming the free surface. The most critical design constraint is that the devices be lightweight and non-wetting. Microscale manufacturing techniques and new man-made materials such as hydrophobic coatings and thermally actuated wires are implemented. Using high-speed cinematography and flow visualization, we compare the functionality and dynamics of our devices with those of their natural counterparts.

  11. Water-walking devices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, David L.; Prakash, Manu; Chan, Brian; Bush, John W. M.

    We report recent efforts in the design and construction of water-walking machines inspired by insects and spiders. The fundamental physical constraints on the size, proportion and dynamics of natural water-walkers are enumerated and used as design criteria for analogous mechanical devices. We report devices capable of rowing along the surface, leaping off the surface and climbing menisci by deforming the free surface. The most critical design constraint is that the devices be lightweight and non-wetting. Microscale manufacturing techniques and new man-made materials such as hydrophobic coatings and thermally actuated wires are implemented. Using highspeed cinematography and flow visualization, we compare the functionality and dynamics of our devices with those of their natural counterparts.

  12. Rhythm Pattern of Sole through Electrification of the Human Body When Walking

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Takiguchi, Kiyoaki; Wada, Takayuki; Tohyama, Shigeki

    The rhythm of automatic cyclic movements such as walking is known to be generated by a rhythm generator called CPG in the spinal cord. The measurement of rhythm characteristics in walking is considered to be important for analyzing human bipedal walking and adaptive walking on irregular terrain. In particular, the soles that contact the terrain surface perform flexible movements similar to the movement of the fins of a lungfish, which is considered to be the predecessor of land animals. The sole movements are believed to be a basic movement acquired during prehistoric times. The detailed rhythm pattern of sole motion is considered to be important. We developed a method for measuring electrification without installing device on a subject's body and footwear for stabilizing the electrification of the human body. We measured the rhythm pattern of 20 subjects including 4 infants when walking by using this system and the corresponding equipment. Therefore, we confirmed the commonality of the correlative rhythm patterns of 20 subjects. Further, with regard to an individual subject, the reproducibility of a rhythm pattern with strong correlation coefficient > 0.93 ± 0.5 (mean ± SD) concerning rhythms of trials that are differently conducted on adult subjects could be confirmed.

  13. Treadmill walking is not equivalent to overground walking for the study of walking smoothness and rhythmicity in older adults.

    PubMed

    Row Lazzarini, Brandi S; Kataras, Theodore J

    2016-05-01

    Treadmills are appealing for gait studies, but some gait mechanics are disrupted during treadmill walking. The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of speed and treadmill walking on walking smoothness and rhythmicity of 40 men and women between the ages of 70-96 years. Gait smoothness was examined during overground (OG) and treadmill (TM) walking by calculating the harmonic ratio from linear accelerations measured at the level of the lumbar spine. Rhythmicity was quantified as the stride time standard deviation. TM walking was performed at two speeds: a speed matching the natural OG walk speed (TM-OG), and a preferred TM speed (PTM). A dual-task OG condition (OG-DT) was evaluated to determine if TM walking posed a similar cognitive challenge. Statistical analysis included a one-way Analysis of Variance with Bonferroni corrected post hoc comparisons and the Wilcoxon signed rank test for non-normally distributed variables. Average PTM speed was slower than OG. Compared to OG, those who could reach the TM-OG speed (74.3% of sample) exhibited improved ML smoothness and rhythmicity, and the slower PTM caused worsened vertical and AP smoothness, but did not affect rhythmicity. PTM disrupted smoothness and rhythmicity differently than the OG-DT condition, likely due to reduced speed. The use of treadmills for gait smoothness and rhythmicity studies in older adults is problematic; some participants will not achieve OG speed during TM walking, walking at the TM-OG speed artificially improves rhythmicity and ML smoothness, and walking at the slower PTM speed worsens vertical and AP gait smoothness. PMID:27131175

  14. Emergence of bipedal locomotion through entrainment among the neuro-musculo-skeletal system and the environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taga, Gentaro

    1994-08-01

    A principle of locomotor control in an unpredictably changing environment is presented on the basis of neurophysiology and biomechanics from the perspective of nonlinear dynamics theory. Locomotor movements emerge as a limit cycle generated through global entrainment among the neuro-musculo-skeletal system and the environment. A computer simulation of a specific model of bipedal locomotion shows its ability to adapt to a changing environment in real-time. The stability of the limit cycle is maintained despite the presence of time delays in transporting and processing information between the neural rhythm generator and the musculo-skeletal system. With considerable time delays, however, the locomotor pattern becomes chaotic, which is compared with a gait of patients with neural deficits. A general framework for motor control is discussed toward the control of movements in an unpredictable environment.

  15. Quantum walk public-key cryptographic system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vlachou, C.; Rodrigues, J.; Mateus, P.; Paunković, N.; Souto, A.

    2015-12-01

    Quantum Cryptography is a rapidly developing field of research that benefits from the properties of Quantum Mechanics in performing cryptographic tasks. Quantum walks are a powerful model for quantum computation and very promising for quantum information processing. In this paper, we present a quantum public-key cryptographic system based on quantum walks. In particular, in the proposed protocol the public-key is given by a quantum state generated by performing a quantum walk. We show that the protocol is secure and analyze the complexity of public key generation and encryption/decryption procedures.

  16. Universal computation by multiparticle quantum walk.

    PubMed

    Childs, Andrew M; Gosset, David; Webb, Zak

    2013-02-15

    A quantum walk is a time-homogeneous quantum-mechanical process on a graph defined by analogy to classical random walk. The quantum walker is a particle that moves from a given vertex to adjacent vertices in quantum superposition. We consider a generalization to interacting systems with more than one walker, such as the Bose-Hubbard model and systems of fermions or distinguishable particles with nearest-neighbor interactions, and show that multiparticle quantum walk is capable of universal quantum computation. Our construction could, in principle, be used as an architecture for building a scalable quantum computer with no need for time-dependent control. PMID:23413349

  17. Numerical Simulations of Level-Ground Walking Based on Passive Walk for Planar Biped Robots with Torso by Hip Actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Narukawa, Terumasa; Takahashi, Masaki; Yoshida, Kazuo

    This study aims at a design technique of energy-efficient biped walking robots on level ground with simple mechanisms. To do this, we focus on the passive dynamic walkers which can walk stably down a shallow slope without actuators and controllers. On level ground, active walking should be studied because the mechanical energy is mainly lost through the swing-leg impacts with the ground. In this paper, numerical simulations show that planar biped robots with torso can walk efficiently on level ground over a wide range of speed by only using hip actuators. The hip actuators are used for a torso and swing-leg control based on passive-dynamic walking. The torso is used to generate active power replacing gravity used in the case of the passive walk. The swing-leg control is introduced to walk stably over a wide range of speed.

  18. Mechanical analysis of infant carrying in hominoids

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Amaral, Lia Q.

    2008-04-01

    In all higher nonhuman primates, species survival depends upon safe carrying of infants clinging to body hair of adults. In this work, measurements of mechanical properties of ape hair (gibbon, orangutan, and gorilla) are presented, focusing on constraints for safe infant carrying. Results of hair tensile properties are shown to be species-dependent. Analysis of the mechanics of the mounting position, typical of heavier infant carrying among African apes, shows that both clinging and friction are necessary to carry heavy infants. As a consequence, a required relationship between infant weight, hair-hair friction coefficient, and body angle exists. The hair-hair friction coefficient is measured using natural ape skin samples, and dependence on load and humidity is analyzed. Numerical evaluation of the equilibrium constraint is in agreement with the knuckle-walking quadruped position of African apes. Bipedality is clearly incompatible with the usual clinging and mounting pattern of infant carrying, requiring a revision of models of hominization in relation to the divergence between apes and hominins. These results suggest that safe carrying of heavy infants justify the emergence of biped form of locomotion. Ways to test this possibility are foreseen here.

  19. Anyonic quantum walks

    SciTech Connect

    Brennen, Gavin K.; Ellinas, Demosthenes; Kendon, Viv; Pachos, Jiannis K. Tsohantjis, Ioannis; Wang Zhenghan

    2010-03-15

    The one dimensional quantum walk of anyonic systems is presented. The anyonic walker performs braiding operations with stationary anyons of the same type ordered canonically on the line of the walk. Abelian as well as non-Abelian anyons are studied and it is shown that they have very different properties. Abelian anyonic walks demonstrate the expected quadratic quantum speedup. Non-Abelian anyonic walks are much more subtle. The exponential increase of the system's Hilbert space and the particular statistical evolution of non-Abelian anyons give a variety of new behaviors. The position distribution of the walker is related to Jones polynomials, topological invariants of the links created by the anyonic world-lines during the walk. Several examples such as the SU(2){sub k} and the quantum double models are considered that provide insight to the rich diffusion properties of anyons.

  20. Lévy walks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zaburdaev, V.; Denisov, S.; Klafter, J.

    2015-04-01

    Random walk is a fundamental concept with applications ranging from quantum physics to econometrics. Remarkably, one specific model of random walks appears to be ubiquitous across many fields as a tool to analyze transport phenomena in which the dispersal process is faster than dictated by Brownian diffusion. The Lévy-walk model combines two key features, the ability to generate anomalously fast diffusion and a finite velocity of a random walker. Recent results in optics, Hamiltonian chaos, cold atom dynamics, biophysics, and behavioral science demonstrate that this particular type of random walk provides significant insight into complex transport phenomena. This review gives a self-consistent introduction to Lévy walks, surveys their existing applications, including latest advances, and outlines further perspectives.

  1. Quantum walks on simplicial complexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matsue, Kaname; Ogurisu, Osamu; Segawa, Etsuo

    2016-05-01

    We construct a new type of quantum walks on simplicial complexes as a natural extension of the well-known Szegedy walk on graphs. One can numerically observe that our proposing quantum walks possess linear spreading and localization as in the case of the Grover walk on lattices. Moreover, our numerical simulation suggests that localization of our quantum walks reflects not only topological but also geometric structures. On the other hand, our proposing quantum walk contains an intrinsic problem concerning exhibition of non-trivial behavior, which is not seen in typical quantum walks such as Grover walks on graphs.

  2. Epidemic spreading driven by biased random walks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pu, Cunlai; Li, Siyuan; Yang, Jian

    2015-08-01

    Random walk is one of the basic mechanisms of many network-related applications. In this paper, we study the dynamics of epidemic spreading driven by biased random walks in complex networks. In our epidemic model, infected nodes send out infection packets by biased random walks to their neighbor nodes, and this causes the infection of susceptible nodes that receive the packets. Infected nodes recover from the infection at a constant rate λ, and will not be infected again after recovery. We obtain the largest instantaneous number of infected nodes and the largest number of ever-infected nodes respectively, by tuning the parameter α of the biased random walks. Simulation results on model and real-world networks show that spread of the epidemic becomes intense and widespread with increase of either delivery capacity of infected nodes, average node degree, or homogeneity of node degree distribution.

  3. Walking with coffee: why does it spill?

    PubMed

    Mayer, H C; Krechetnikov, R

    2012-04-01

    In our busy lives, almost all of us have to walk with a cup of coffee. While often we spill the drink, this familiar phenomenon has never been explored systematically. Here we report on the results of an experimental study of the conditions under which coffee spills for various walking speeds and initial liquid levels in the cup. These observations are analyzed from the dynamical systems and fluid mechanics viewpoints as well as with the help of a model developed here. Particularities of the common cup sizes, the coffee properties, and the biomechanics of walking proved to be responsible for the spilling phenomenon. The studied problem represents an example of the interplay between the complex motion of a cup, due to the biomechanics of a walking individual, and the low-viscosity-liquid dynamics in it. PMID:22680548

  4. From bistate molecular switches to self-directed track-walking nanomotors.

    PubMed

    Loh, Iong Ying; Cheng, Juan; Tee, Shern Ren; Efremov, Artem; Wang, Zhisong

    2014-10-28

    Track-walking nanomotors and larger systems integrating these motors are important for wide real-world applications of nanotechnology. However, inventing these nanomotors remains difficult, a sharp contrast to the widespread success of simpler switch-like nanodevices, even though the latter already encompasses basic elements of the former such as engine-like bistate contraction/extension or leg-like controllable binding. This conspicuous gap reflects an impeding bottleneck for the nanomotor development, namely, lack of a modularized construction by which spatially and functionally separable "engines" and "legs" are flexibly assembled into a self-directed motor. Indeed, all track-walking nanomotors reported to date combine the engine and leg functions in the same molecular part, which largely underpins the device-motor gap. Here we propose a general design principle allowing the modularized nanomotor construction from disentangled engine-like and leg-like motifs, and provide an experimental proof of concept by implementing a bipedal DNA nanomotor up to a best working regime of this versatile design principle. The motor uses a light-powered contraction-extension switch to drive a coordinated hand-over-hand directional walking on a DNA track. Systematic fluorescence experiments confirm the motor's directional motion and suggest that the motor possesses two directional biases, one for rear leg dissociation and one for forward leg binding. This study opens a viable route to develop track-walking nanomotors from numerous molecular switches and binding motifs available from nanodevice research and biology. PMID:25268955

  5. Contribution of Each Leg to the Control of Unperturbed Bipedal Stance in Lower Limb Amputees: New Insights Using Entropy

    PubMed Central

    Hlavackova, Petra; Franco, Céline; Diot, Bruno; Vuillerme, Nicolas

    2011-01-01

    The present study was designed to assess the relative contribution of each leg to unperturbed bipedal posture in lower limb amputees. To achieve this goal, eight unilateral traumatic trans-femoral amputees (TFA) were asked to stand as still as possible on a plantar pressure data acquisition system with their eyes closed. Four dependent variables were computed to describe the subject's postural behavior: (1) body weight distribution, (2) amplitude, (3) velocity and (4) regularity of centre of foot pressure (CoP) trajectories under the amputated (A) leg and the non-amputated (NA) leg. Results showed a larger body weight distribution applied to the NA leg than to the A leg and a more regular CoP profiles (lower sample entropy values) with greater amplitude and velocity under the NA leg than under the A leg. Taken together, these findings suggest that the NA leg and the A leg do not equally contribute to the control of unperturbed bipedal posture in TFA. The observation that TFA do actively control unperturbed bipedal posture with their NA leg could be viewed as an adaptive process to the loss of the lower leg afferents and efferents because of the unilateral lower-limb amputation. From a methodological point of view, these results demonstrate the suitability of computing bilateral CoP trajectories regularity for the assessment of lateralized postural control under pathological conditions. PMID:21603630

  6. Walking and jumping spores

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marmottant, Philippe

    2012-02-01

    The Equisetum plants, more commonly called ``horsetail,'' emit 50-microns spores that are spherical in shape and present four hygroscopic arms. Under high humidity, the arms are retracted. But under lower humidity, less than 70%, the four arms deploy beautifully. With time-lapse image recordings, we show that under repeated cycles of dry and high humidity, the spores behave as random walkers, since they move by about their size in a different direction at every cycle. The process is apparently stochastic because of the complex shape of the arms and hysteretic friction of the arms on the ground. For some spores, a decrease in humidity level results in very fast jumps, the spores taking off at a typical velocity of a meter per second, as recorded on high-speed camera. With these jumps, they reach centimetric elevations, much larger than their size. The physical mechanism at the root of these ``Levy-flight'' jumps is still under investigation. The walking and jumping phenomena thus provide motility, which we believe is helpful for the understanding of the biological dispersion of the spores. It could also bring biomimetic inspiration to engineer new motile elastic structures.

  7. Walking: technology and biology.

    PubMed

    Pfeiffer, Friedrich; Inoue, Hirochika

    2007-01-15

    If all the signs are to be believed, then the twenty-first century will technologically be characterized by machine walking and its relevant products, which possess all chances to become real bulk goods in the course of the next decades. With several university institutes and with Honda and Sony from the industrial side, Japan is today and without any doubt the leading nation in research and development of walking machines. The US and Europe follow at some distance. Walking machines will influence all areas of daily and industrial life and, with the fast evolution of artificial intelligence, will become a real partner of human beings. All relevant technologies are highly interdisciplinary, they will push the future technologies of all technical fields. The special issue on this topic gives a selection of walking machine research and development including some aspects from biology. PMID:17148046

  8. Early Walking of Geriatric Amputees

    PubMed Central

    Devas, M. B.

    1971-01-01

    After amputation geriatric patients have been enabled to get up and walk with the help of a prosthesis, an “early walking aid.” The physiotherapist measures the patient, fits the early walking aid, and instructs him in walking. The prosthesis is simple to make, easy to apply, and allows early walking with the use of a walking frame or sticks. Thus the geriatric amputee can walk as soon after operation as his general condition allows and the surgeon wishes. ImagesFIG. 1FIG. 2 PMID:5100378

  9. Biomechanical modeling and sensitivity analysis of bipedal running ability. II. Extinct taxa.

    PubMed

    Hutchinson, John R

    2004-10-01

    Using an inverse dynamics biomechanical analysis that was previously validated for extant bipeds, I calculated the minimum amount of actively contracting hindlimb extensor muscle that would have been needed for rapid bipedal running in several extinct dinosaur taxa. I analyzed models of nine theropod dinosaurs (including birds) covering over five orders of magnitude in size. My results uphold previous findings that large theropods such as Tyrannosaurus could not run very quickly, whereas smaller theropods (including some extinct birds) were adept runners. Furthermore, my results strengthen the contention that many nonavian theropods, especially larger individuals, used fairly upright limb orientations, which would have reduced required muscular force, and hence muscle mass. Additional sensitivity analysis of muscle fascicle lengths, moment arms, and limb orientation supports these conclusions and points out directions for future research on the musculoskeletal limits on running ability. Although ankle extensor muscle support is shown to have been important for all taxa, the ability of hip extensor muscles to support the body appears to be a crucial limit for running capacity in larger taxa. I discuss what speeds were possible for different theropod dinosaurs, and how running ability evolved in an inverse relationship to body size in archosaurs. PMID:15352202

  10. [Comparison of kinematic and kinetic parameters between the locomotion patterns in nordic walking, walking and running].

    PubMed

    Kleindienst, F I; Michel, K J; Schwarz, J; Krabbe, B

    2006-03-01

    Based on a higher cardio-pulmonary and cardio-vascular benefit and a promised reduction of mechanical load of the musculoskeletal system Nordic Walking (NW) shows an increased market potential. The present study should investigate whether there are biomechanical differences between the locomotion patterns NW, walking and running. Moreover possible resultant load differences should be determined. Eleven subjects, who were already experienced with the NW-technique, participated in this experiment. The kinematic data were collected using two high-speed camera systems from posterior and from lateral at the same time. Simultaneously the ground reaction forces were recorded. The kinematic and the kinetic data reveal differences between the three analyzed locomotion patterns. For NW as well as walking the mechanical load of the lower extremity is lower compared to running. None of the kinematic parameters suggest a "physiological benefit" of NW compared to walking. Moreover NW shows higher vertical and horizontal forces during landing. Exclusively the lower vertical force peak during push off indicates a lower mechanical load for NW in comparison to walking. Consequently it is questionable is NW -- based on its promised "biomechanical benefits" compared to walking -- should be still recommended for overweight people and for people with existing musculoskeletal problems of the lower limb. PMID:16544213

  11. D.U.C.K. Walking.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Steller, Jenifer J.

    This manual presents a schoolwide walking program that includes aerobic fitness information, curriculum integration, and walking tours. "Discover and Understand Carolina Kids by Walking" is D.U.C.K. Walking. An aerobic walking activity, D.U.C.K. Walking has two major goals: (1) to promote regular walking as a way to exercise at any age; and (2) to…

  12. Labyrinth walking in corrections.

    PubMed

    Zucker, Donna M; Sharma, Amy

    2012-02-01

    A 6 week labyrinth walking program was pilot tested in a correctional setting and goals were to: 1) determine the feasibility of a labyrinth walking curriculum; 2) pilot test measures of health related quality of life (QOL) (pre and post-surveys) and blood pressure; and 3) examine the influence of relationship-centered teaching on subject satisfaction. Relational communication was used as a framework for this study, emphasizing concepts of trust, competency and similarly in the teacher. A pretest/posttest descriptive design was used. The sample was 14 offenders at a Massachusetts county jail. The intervention included six 90 minute sessions, composed of a lecture, a labyrinth walk, and journal writing. Measures included a demographic survey; pre and post session walk blood pressures; pre and post program QOL measures; and a post program measure of satisfaction. The sample was 57% Caucasian, 36% Hispanic, and 7% African American, with an average age of 34, mostly high school educated and single. Drug of choice was alcohol with age of use at 12 and 1/2 years. Seventy-nine percent were previously incarcerated more than twice. QOL data were not changed pre to post. BP data trended in a healthy direction from weeks 1 to 6. Satisfaction with the teacher and the program was high. The labyrinth walking pilot program was proven feasible, low cost and satisfying for the participants. Recommendations for future studies are discussed. PMID:22468660

  13. Walks on SPR neighborhoods.

    PubMed

    Caceres, Alan Joseph J; Castillo, Juan; Lee, Jinnie; St John, Katherine

    2013-01-01

    A nearest-neighbor-interchange (NNI)-walk is a sequence of unrooted phylogenetic trees, T1, T2, . . . , T(k) where each consecutive pair of trees differs by a single NNI move. We give tight bounds on the length of the shortest NNI-walks that visit all trees in a subtree-prune-and-regraft (SPR) neighborhood of a given tree. For any unrooted, binary tree, T, on n leaves, the shortest walk takes Θ(n²) additional steps more than the number of trees in the SPR neighborhood. This answers Bryant’s Second Combinatorial Challenge from the Phylogenetics Challenges List, the Isaac Newton Institute, 2011, and the Penny Ante Problem List, 2009. PMID:23702562

  14. A theory on the evolution of the habitual orthograde human bipedalism--the "Amphibische Generalistentheorie".

    PubMed

    Niemitz, Carsten

    2002-03-01

    The theory is formulated that ubiquitous scarcity of energy is one of the main motors of evolution. It is concluded that our primate ancestors never came down from the trees, but rather they have always been (semi-)terrestrial. This habit is probably an old symplesiomorph trait, older than primates themselves. Terrestrial habits in primates correlate to body weight in small systematic groups (e.g., large genera, families) but are, overall, completely independent from individual body mass. An omnivorous, semiterrestrial quadrupedal locomotor generalist seems to be the most probable morpho- and eco-type for our ancestor at the threshold of a hominoid stage of our evolution. The theory presented here suggests that our hominoid ancestor lived in gallery forests and changed strata in order also to inhabit the savannah habitat as well as the shallow water of the rivers or coasts. Foraging in a wading manner was extremely favourable for an effective and, especially, seasonally independent, animal protein supply. Anatomical adaptations to orthogradism and proportions of the extremities are discussed in relation to the necessary and frequent change of habitat strata. Ultimately, human bipedalism is seen here to be derived as a consequence of the centre of body mass, which is, in primates, near the hind extremities. By contrast to other mammals entering the water, wading primates sink back on their hind limbs. Selective forces for habitat use, limb proportions and wading habits are discussed, as well as the phylogenetic origin of human affinity to water and shores in all peoples through all times, from australopithecine times through the Paleolithic until today. PMID:12058577

  15. Persistence of Motor-Equivalent Postural Fluctuations during Bipedal Quiet Standing

    PubMed Central

    Verrel, Julius; Pradon, Didier; Vuillerme, Nicolas

    2012-01-01

    Theoretical and empirical work indicates that the central nervous system is able to stabilize motor performance by selectively suppressing task-relevant variability (TRV), while allowing task-equivalent variability (TEV) to occur. During unperturbed bipedal standing, it has previously been observed that, for task variables such as the whole-body center of mass (CoM), TEV exceeds TRV in amplitude. However, selective control (and correction) of TRV should also lead to different temporal characteristics, with TEV exhibiting higher temporal persistence compared to TRV. The present study was specifically designed to test this prediction. Kinematics of prolonged quiet standing (5 minutes) was measured in fourteen healthy young participants, with eyes closed. Using the uncontrolled manifold analysis, postural variability in six sagittal joint angles was decomposed into TEV and TRV with respect to four task variables: (1) center of mass (CoM) position, (2) head position, (3) trunk orientation and (4) head orientation. Persistence of fluctuations within the two variability components was quantified by the time-lagged auto-correlation, with eight time lags between 1 and 128 seconds. The pattern of results differed between task variables. For three of the four task variables (CoM position, head position, trunk orientation), TEV significantly exceeded TRV over the entire 300 s-period.The autocorrelation analysis confirmed our main hypothesis for CoM position and head position: at intermediate and longer time delays, TEV exhibited higher persistence than TRV. Trunk orientation showed a similar trend, while head orientation did not show a systematic difference between TEV and TRV persistence. The combination of temporal and task-equivalent analyses in the present study allow a refined characterization of the dynamic control processes underlying the stabilization of upright standing. The results confirm the prediction, derived from computational motor control, that task

  16. Homeothermy and primate bipedalism: is water shortage or solar radiation the main threat to baboon (Papio hamadryas) homeothermy?

    PubMed

    Mitchell, Duncan; Fuller, Andrea; Maloney, Shane K

    2009-05-01

    Other than the hominin lineage, baboons are the diurnally active primates that have colonized the arid plains of Africa most successfully. While the hominin lineage adopted bipedalism before colonizing the open, dry plains, baboons retained a quadrupedal mode of locomotion. Because bipedalism has been considered to reduce the thermoregulatory stress of inhabiting open dry plains, we investigated how baboons cope with thermal loads and water restriction. Using implanted data loggers, we measured abdominal temperature every 5 min in six unrestrained baboons while they were exposed to simulated desert conditions (15 degrees C at night rising to 35 degrees C during the day, with and without extra radiant heating), or an ambient temperature of 22 degrees C. At 22 degrees C, core temperature averaged 37.9 degrees C and cycled nychthemerally by 1.7 degrees C. Mean, minimum, and maximum daily core temperatures in euhydrated baboons in the simulated desert environments did not differ from the temperatures displayed in the 22 degrees C environment, even when radiant heating was applied. At 22 degrees C, restricting water intake did not affect core temperature. During the desert simulations, maximum core temperature increased significantly on each day of water deprivation, with the highest temperatures (>40 degrees C) on the third day in the simulation that included radiant heat. When drinking water heated to 38 degrees C was returned, core temperature decreased rapidly to a level lower than normal for that time of day. We conclude that baboons with access to water can maintain homeothermy in the face of high air temperatures and radiant heat loads, but that a lack of access to drinking water poses a major threat to baboon homeothermy. We speculate that any competitive thermoregulatory advantage of bipedalism in early hominins was related to coping with water shortage in hot environments, and that their freed hands might have enabled them to transport enough water to avoid

  17. Random walks on networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Donnelly, Isaac

    Random walks on lattices are a well used model for diffusion on continuum. They have been to model subdiffusive systems, systems with forcing and reactions as well as a combination of the three. We extend the traditional random walk framework to the network to obtain novel results. As an example due to the small graph diameter, the early time behaviour of subdiffusive dynamics dominates the observed system which has implications for models of the brain or airline networks. I would like to thank the Australian American Fulbright Association.

  18. Mall Walking Program Environments, Features, and Participants: A Scoping Review

    PubMed Central

    Belza, Basia; Allen, Peg; Brolliar, Sarah; Brown, David R.; Cormier, Marc L.; Janicek, Sarah; Jones, Dina L.; King, Diane K.; Marquez, David X.; Rosenberg, Dori E.

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Walking is a preferred and recommended physical activity for middle-aged and older adults, but many barriers exist, including concerns about safety (ie, personal security), falling, and inclement weather. Mall walking programs may overcome these barriers. The purpose of this study was to summarize the evidence on the health-related value of mall walking and mall walking programs. Methods We conducted a scoping review of the literature to determine the features, environments, and benefits of mall walking programs using the RE-AIM framework (reach, effectiveness, adoption, implementation, and maintenance). The inclusion criteria were articles that involved adults aged 45 years or older who walked in indoor or outdoor shopping malls. Exclusion criteria were articles that used malls as laboratory settings or focused on the mechanics of walking. We included published research studies, dissertations, theses, conference abstracts, syntheses, nonresearch articles, theoretical papers, editorials, reports, policy briefs, standards and guidelines, and nonresearch conference abstracts and proposals. Websites and articles written in a language other than English were excluded. Results We located 254 articles on mall walking; 32 articles met our inclusion criteria. We found that malls provided safe, accessible, and affordable exercise environments for middle-aged and older adults. Programmatic features such as program leaders, blood pressure checks, and warm-up exercises facilitated participation. Individual benefits of mall walking programs included improvements in physical, social, and emotional well-being. Limited transportation to the mall was a barrier to participation. Conclusion We found the potential for mall walking programs to be implemented in various communities as a health promotion measure. However, the research on mall walking programs is limited and has weak study designs. More rigorous research is needed to define best practices for mall walking

  19. Bicycling and Walking are Associated with Different Cortical Oscillatory Dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Storzer, Lena; Butz, Markus; Hirschmann, Jan; Abbasi, Omid; Gratkowski, Maciej; Saupe, Dietmar; Schnitzler, Alfons; Dalal, Sarang S.

    2016-01-01

    Although bicycling and walking involve similar complex coordinated movements, surprisingly Parkinson’s patients with freezing of gait typically remain able to bicycle despite severe difficulties in walking. This observation suggests functional differences in the motor networks subserving bicycling and walking. However, a direct comparison of brain activity related to bicycling and walking has never been performed, neither in healthy participants nor in patients. Such a comparison could potentially help elucidating the cortical involvement in motor control and the mechanisms through which bicycling ability may be preserved in patients with freezing of gait. The aim of this study was to contrast the cortical oscillatory dynamics involved in bicycling and walking in healthy participants. To this end, EEG and EMG data of 14 healthy participants were analyzed, who cycled on a stationary bicycle at a slow cadence of 40 revolutions per minute (rpm) and walked at 40 strides per minute (spm), respectively. Relative to walking, bicycling was associated with a stronger power decrease in the high beta band (23–35 Hz) during movement initiation and execution, followed by a stronger beta power increase after movement termination. Walking, on the other hand, was characterized by a stronger and persisting alpha power (8–12 Hz) decrease. Both bicycling and walking exhibited movement cycle-dependent power modulation in the 24–40 Hz range that was correlated with EMG activity. This modulation was significantly stronger in walking. The present findings reveal differential cortical oscillatory dynamics in motor control for two types of complex coordinated motor behavior, i.e., bicycling and walking. Bicycling was associated with a stronger sustained cortical activation as indicated by the stronger high beta power decrease during movement execution and less cortical motor control within the movement cycle. We speculate this to be due to the more continuous nature of bicycling

  20. Walking: the Cheap, Easy Workout

    MedlinePlus

    ... news/fullstory_159582.html Walking: The Cheap, Easy Workout And it's a good way to start exercising, ... endurance. You can give your upper body a workout while walking by carrying one to five pound ...

  1. Predicting metabolic rate across walking speed: One fit for all body sizes?

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We formulated a "one-size-fits-all" model that predicts the energy requirements of level human walking from height, weight, and walking speed. Our three-component model theorizes that the energy expended per kilogram per stride is independent of stature at mechanically equivalent walking speeds. We ...

  2. Universal quantum computation by discontinuous quantum walk

    SciTech Connect

    Underwood, Michael S.; Feder, David L.

    2010-10-15

    Quantum walks are the quantum-mechanical analog of random walks, in which a quantum ''walker'' evolves between initial and final states by traversing the edges of a graph, either in discrete steps from node to node or via continuous evolution under the Hamiltonian furnished by the adjacency matrix of the graph. We present a hybrid scheme for universal quantum computation in which a quantum walker takes discrete steps of continuous evolution. This ''discontinuous'' quantum walk employs perfect quantum-state transfer between two nodes of specific subgraphs chosen to implement a universal gate set, thereby ensuring unitary evolution without requiring the introduction of an ancillary coin space. The run time is linear in the number of simulated qubits and gates. The scheme allows multiple runs of the algorithm to be executed almost simultaneously by starting walkers one time step apart.

  3. Walking with a Slower Friend

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bailey, Herb; Kalman, Dan

    2011-01-01

    Fay and Sam go for a walk. Sam walks along the left side of the street while Fay, who walks faster, starts with Sam but walks to a point on the right side of the street and then returns to meet Sam to complete one segment of their journey. We determine Fay's optimal path minimizing segment length, and thus maximizing the number of times they meet…

  4. Phytomolecule icaritin incorporated PLGA/TCP scaffold for steroid-associated osteonecrosis: Proof-of-concept for prevention of hip joint collapse in bipedal emus and mechanistic study in quadrupedal rabbits.

    PubMed

    Qin, Ling; Yao, Dong; Zheng, Lizhen; Liu, Wai-Ching; Liu, Zhong; Lei, Ming; Huang, Le; Xie, Xinhui; Wang, Xinluan; Chen, Yang; Yao, Xinsheng; Peng, Jiang; Gong, He; Griffith, James F; Huang, Yanping; Zheng, Yongping; Feng, Jian Q; Liu, Ying; Chen, Shihui; Xiao, Deming; Wang, Daping; Xiong, Jiangyi; Pei, Duanqing; Zhang, Peng; Pan, Xiaohua; Wang, Xiaohong; Lee, Kwong-Man; Cheng, Chun-Yiu

    2015-08-01

    Steroid-associated osteonecrosis (SAON) may lead to joint collapse and subsequent joint replacement. Poly lactic-co-glycolic acid/tricalcium phosphate (P/T) scaffold providing sustained release of icaritin (a metabolite of Epimedium-derived flavonoids) was investigated as a bone defect filler after surgical core-decompression (CD) to prevent femoral head collapse in a bipedal SAON animal model using emu (a large flightless bird). The underlying mechanism on SAON was evaluated using a well-established quadrupedal rabbit model. Fifteen emus were established with SAON, and CD was performed along the femoral neck for the efficacy study. In this CD bone defect, a P/T scaffold with icaritin (P/T/I group) or without icaritin (P/T group) was implanted while no scaffold implantation was used as a control. For the mechanistic study in rabbits, the effects of icaritin and composite scaffolds on bone mesenchymal stem cells (BMSCs) recruitment, osteogenesis, and anti-adipogenesis were evaluated. Our efficacy study showed that P/T/I group had the significantly lowest incidence of femoral head collapse, better preserved cartilage and mechanical properties supported by more new bone formation within the bone tunnel. For the mechanistic study, our in vitro tests suggested that icaritin enhanced the expression of osteogenesis related genes COL1α, osteocalcin, RUNX2, and BMP-2 while inhibited adipogenesis related genes C/EBP-ß, PPAR-γ, and aP2 of rabbit BMSCs. Both P/T and P/T/I scaffolds were demonstrated to recruit BMSCs both in vitro and in vivo but a higher expression of migration related gene VCAM1 was only found in P/T/I group in vitro. In conclusion, both efficacy and mechanistic studies show the potential of a bioactive composite porous P/T scaffold incorporating icaritin to enhance bone defect repair after surgical CD and prevent femoral head collapse in a bipedal SAON emu model. PMID:25968462

  5. Deterministic Walks with Choice

    SciTech Connect

    Beeler, Katy E.; Berenhaut, Kenneth S.; Cooper, Joshua N.; Hunter, Meagan N.; Barr, Peter S.

    2014-01-10

    This paper studies deterministic movement over toroidal grids, integrating local information, bounded memory and choice at individual nodes. The research is motivated by recent work on deterministic random walks, and applications in multi-agent systems. Several results regarding passing tokens through toroidal grids are discussed, as well as some open questions.

  6. Walking in My Shoes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Salia, Hannah

    2010-01-01

    The Walking in My Shoes curriculum at St. Thomas School in Medina, Washington, has been developed to deepen students' understanding of their own heritage and the cultural similarities and differences among their global peers. Exploring the rich diversity of the world's cultural heritage and the interactions of global migrations throughout history,…

  7. Tips for Leading Walks.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kriesberg, Daniel

    2001-01-01

    Offers reminders and tips for improving interpretive walks, including having a theme, drawing on basic teaching methods, drawing on all senses rather than just talking, being a role model to show how learning can be fun, using picture books, using tools of the trade to encourage visitors to learn for themselves, and playing games. (PVD)

  8. A Walk through Time.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Renfroe, Mark; Letendre, Wanda

    1996-01-01

    Describes a seventh-grade class project where students constructed a "time tunnel" (a walk-through display with models and exhibits illustrating various themes and eras). Beginning modestly, the tunnel grew over seven years to include 11 different display scenes. Discusses the construction of the project and benefits to the school. (MJP)

  9. Take a Planet Walk

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schuster, Dwight

    2008-01-01

    Physical models in the classroom "cannot be expected to represent the full-scale phenomenon with complete accuracy, not even in the limited set of characteristics being studied" (AAAS 1990). Therefore, by modifying a popular classroom activity called a "planet walk," teachers can explore upper elementary students' current understandings; create an…

  10. Walking On Air

    NASA Video Gallery

    This video features a series of time lapse sequences photographed by the Expedition 30 crew aboard the International Space Station. Set to the song “Walking in the Air,” by Howard Blake, the v...

  11. Walking Out Graphs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shen, Ji

    2009-01-01

    In the Walking Out Graphs Lesson described here, students experience several types of representations used to describe motion, including words, sentences, equations, graphs, data tables, and actions. The most important theme of this lesson is that students have to understand the consistency among these representations and form the habit of…

  12. Random Walks on Random Graphs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cooper, Colin; Frieze, Alan

    The aim of this article is to discuss some of the notions and applications of random walks on finite graphs, especially as they apply to random graphs. In this section we give some basic definitions, in Section 2 we review applications of random walks in computer science, and in Section 3 we focus on walks in random graphs.

  13. Autonomous exoskeleton reduces metabolic cost of walking.

    PubMed

    Mooney, Luke M; Rouse, Elliott J; Herr, Hugh M

    2014-01-01

    We developed an autonomous powered leg exoskeleton capable of providing large amounts of positive mechanical power to the wearer during powered plantarflexion phase of walking. The autonomous exoskeleton consisted of a winch actuator fasted to the shin which pulled on fiberglass struts attached to a boot. The fiberglass struts formed a rigid extension of the foot when the proximal end of the strut was pulled in forward by the winch actuator. This lightweight, geometric transmission allowed the electric winch actuator to efficiently produce biological levels of power at the ankle joint. The exoskeleton was powered and controlled by lithium polymer batteries and motor controller worn around the waist. Preliminary testing on two subjects walking at 1.4 m/s resulted in the exoskeleton reducing the metabolic cost of walking by 6-11% as compared to not wearing the device. The exoskeleton provided a peak mechanical power of over 180 W at each ankle (mean standard ± deviation) and an average positive mechanical power of 27 ± 1 W total to both ankles, while electrically using 75-89 W of electricity. The batteries (800 g) used in this experiment are estimated to be capable of providing this level of assistance for up to 7 km of walking. PMID:25570638

  14. On extracting design principles from biology: II. Case study-the effect of knee direction on bipedal robot running efficiency.

    PubMed

    Haberland, M; Kim, S

    2015-01-01

    Comparing the leg of an ostrich to that of a human suggests an important question to legged robot designers: should a robot's leg joint bend in the direction of running ('forwards') or opposite ('backwards')? Biological studies cannot answer this question for engineers due to significant differences between the biological and engineering domains. Instead, we investigated the inherent effect of joint bending direction on bipedal robot running efficiency by comparing energetically optimal gaits of a wide variety of robot designs sampled at random from a design space. We found that the great majority of robot designs have several locally optimal gaits with the knee bending backwards that are more efficient than the most efficient gait with the knee bending forwards. The most efficient backwards gaits do not exhibit lower touchdown losses than the most efficient forward gaits; rather, the improved efficiency of backwards gaits stems from lower torque and reduced motion at the hip. The reduced hip use of backwards gaits is enabled by the ability of the backwards knee, acting alone, to (1) propel the robot upwards and forwards simultaneously and (2) lift and protract the foot simultaneously. In the absence of other information, designers interested in building efficient bipedal robots with two-segment legs driven by electric motors should design the knee to bend backwards rather than forwards. Compared to common practices for choosing robot knee direction, application of this principle would have a strong tendency to improve robot efficiency and save design resources. PMID:25643285

  15. The walk and jump of Equisetum spores.

    PubMed

    Marmottant, Philippe; Ponomarenko, Alexandre; Bienaimé, Diane

    2013-11-01

    Equisetum plants (horsetails) reproduce by producing tiny spherical spores that are typically 50 µm in diameter. The spores have four elaters, which are flexible ribbon-like appendages that are initially wrapped around the main spore body and that deploy upon drying or fold back in humid air. If elaters are believed to help dispersal, the exact mechanism for spore motion remains unclear in the literature. In this manuscript, we present observations of the 'walks' and 'jumps' of Equisetum spores, which are novel types of spore locomotion mechanisms compared to the ones of other spores. Walks are driven by humidity cycles, each cycle inducing a small step in a random direction. The dispersal range from the walk is limited, but the walk provides key steps to either exit the sporangium or to reorient and refold. Jumps occur when the spores suddenly thrust themselves after being tightly folded. They result in a very efficient dispersal: even spores jumping from the ground can catch the wind again, whereas non-jumping spores stay on the ground. The understanding of these movements, which are solely driven by humidity variations, conveys biomimetic inspiration for a new class of self-propelled objects. PMID:24026816

  16. Relativistic Weierstrass random walks.

    PubMed

    Saa, Alberto; Venegeroles, Roberto

    2010-08-01

    The Weierstrass random walk is a paradigmatic Markov chain giving rise to a Lévy-type superdiffusive behavior. It is well known that special relativity prevents the arbitrarily high velocities necessary to establish a superdiffusive behavior in any process occurring in Minkowski spacetime, implying, in particular, that any relativistic Markov chain describing spacetime phenomena must be essentially Gaussian. Here, we introduce a simple relativistic extension of the Weierstrass random walk and show that there must exist a transition time t{c} delimiting two qualitative distinct dynamical regimes: the (nonrelativistic) superdiffusive Lévy flights, for tt{c} . Implications of this crossover between different diffusion regimes are discussed for some explicit examples. The study of such an explicit and simple Markov chain can shed some light on several results obtained in much more involved contexts. PMID:20866862

  17. Walking with springs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sugar, Thomas G.; Hollander, Kevin W.; Hitt, Joseph K.

    2011-04-01

    Developing bionic ankles poses great challenges due to the large moment, power, and energy that are required at the ankle. Researchers have added springs in series with a motor to reduce the peak power and energy requirements of a robotic ankle. We developed a "robotic tendon" that reduces the peak power by altering the required motor speed. By changing the required speed, the spring acts as a "load variable transmission." If a simple motor/gearbox solution is used, one walking step would require 38.8J and a peak motor power of 257 W. Using an optimized robotic tendon, the energy required is 21.2 J and the peak motor power is reduced to 96.6 W. We show that adding a passive spring in parallel with the robotic tendon reduces peak loads but the power and energy increase. Adding a passive spring in series with the robotic tendon reduces the energy requirements. We have built a prosthetic ankle SPARKy, Spring Ankle with Regenerative Kinetics, that allows a user to walk forwards, backwards, ascend and descend stairs, walk up and down slopes as well as jog.

  18. Running for Exercise Mitigates Age-Related Deterioration of Walking Economy

    PubMed Central

    Ortega, Justus D.; Beck, Owen N.; Roby, Jaclyn M.; Turney, Aria L.; Kram, Rodger

    2014-01-01

    Introduction Impaired walking performance is a key predictor of morbidity among older adults. A distinctive characteristic of impaired walking performance among older adults is a greater metabolic cost (worse economy) compared to young adults. However, older adults who consistently run have been shown to retain a similar running economy as young runners. Unfortunately, those running studies did not measure the metabolic cost of walking. Thus, it is unclear if running exercise can prevent the deterioration of walking economy. Purpose To determine if and how regular walking vs. running exercise affects the economy of locomotion in older adults. Methods 15 older adults (69±3 years) who walk ≥30 min, 3x/week for exercise, “walkers” and 15 older adults (69±5 years) who run ≥30 min, 3x/week, “runners” walked on a force-instrumented treadmill at three speeds (0.75, 1.25, and 1.75 m/s). We determined walking economy using expired gas analysis and walking mechanics via ground reaction forces during the last 2 minutes of each 5 minute trial. We compared walking economy between the two groups and to non-aerobically trained young and older adults from a prior study. Results Older runners had a 7–10% better walking economy than older walkers over the range of speeds tested (p = .016) and had walking economy similar to young sedentary adults over a similar range of speeds (p = .237). We found no substantial biomechanical differences between older walkers and runners. In contrast to older runners, older walkers had similar walking economy as older sedentary adults (p = .461) and ∼26% worse walking economy than young adults (p<.0001). Conclusion Running mitigates the age-related deterioration of walking economy whereas walking for exercise appears to have minimal effect on the age-related deterioration in walking economy. PMID:25411850

  19. Backward Walking in Parkinson Disease

    PubMed Central

    Hackney, Madeleine E.; Earhart, Gammon M.

    2010-01-01

    We walk backward on a daily basis, such as when backing away from the kitchen sink or stepping back from a curb as a swiftly moving bus passes. This task may be particularly difficult for individuals with PD who often fall as a result of moving or being perturbed in the backward direction (Horak et al. 2005, Bloem et al 2004). The aim of this study was to assess backward walking in individuals with PD. Both forward and backward gait were assessed in 78 people with idiopathic PD (H&Y range: 0.5–3) in the ON state, and 74 age- and sex-matched controls. In forward walking, those with PD had significantly shorter strides, lower swing percents, higher stance percents and lower functional ambulation profiles than controls. Both groups walked significantly slower and with a wider base of support during backward walking than forward walking. Additionally, in backward walking those with PD walked significantly slower with shorter strides, lower swing percents, and higher double support and stance percents, and lower functional ambulation profiles compared to controls. Those with mild to moderate PD have impaired forward and backward walking, but differences between those with and without PD are more pronounced in backward walking. PMID:18951535

  20. Walking and Running on the Circular Treadmill: Transition Speed and Podokinetic Aftereffects

    PubMed Central

    Earhart, Gammon M.

    2008-01-01

    The author compared 10 participants' self-selected walk-to-run transition speeds on a standard treadmill with those on a circular treadmill. The speed of the outer limb at walk-to-run transition on the circular treadmill and on the standard treadmill were very similar. Adaptive aftereffects from running and walking on the circular treadmill were also similar. When asked to step in place without vision, all participants inadvertently turned in circles following walking or running on the treadmill. The results of the present study suggest that the mechanisms controlling walk-to-run transitions are similar for the standard and circular treadmills and demonstrate the robust generalizability of locomotor aftereffects from running to walking. Adaptive control of speed, form, and direction may therefore share similar mechanisms for walking and running. PMID:16968680

  1. Perception, planning, and control for walking on rugged terrain

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Simmons, Reid; Krotkov, Eric

    1991-01-01

    The CMU Planetary Rover project is developing a six-legged walking robot capable of autonomously navigating, exploring, and acquiring samples in rugged, unknown environments. To gain experience with the problems involved in walking on rugged terrain, a full-scale prototype leg was built and mounted on a carriage that rolls along overhead rails. Issues addressed in developing the software system to autonomously walk the leg through rugged terrain are described. In particular, the insights gained into perceiving and modeling rugged terrain, controlling the legged mechanism, interacting with the ground, choosing safe yet effective footfalls, and planning efficient leg moves through space are described.

  2. Agile Walking Robot

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Larimer, Stanley J.; Lisec, Thomas R.; Spiessbach, Andrew J.; Waldron, Kenneth J.

    1990-01-01

    Proposed agile walking robot operates over rocky, sandy, and sloping terrain. Offers stability and climbing ability superior to other conceptual mobile robots. Equipped with six articulated legs like those of insect, continually feels ground under leg before applying weight to it. If leg sensed unexpected object or failed to make contact with ground at expected point, seeks alternative position within radius of 20 cm. Failing that, robot halts, examines area around foot in detail with laser ranging imager, and replans entire cycle of steps for all legs before proceeding.

  3. Random-walk enzymes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mak, Chi H.; Pham, Phuong; Afif, Samir A.; Goodman, Myron F.

    2015-09-01

    Enzymes that rely on random walk to search for substrate targets in a heterogeneously dispersed medium can leave behind complex spatial profiles of their catalyzed conversions. The catalytic signatures of these random-walk enzymes are the result of two coupled stochastic processes: scanning and catalysis. Here we develop analytical models to understand the conversion profiles produced by these enzymes, comparing an intrusive model, in which scanning and catalysis are tightly coupled, against a loosely coupled passive model. Diagrammatic theory and path-integral solutions of these models revealed clearly distinct predictions. Comparison to experimental data from catalyzed deaminations deposited on single-stranded DNA by the enzyme activation-induced deoxycytidine deaminase (AID) demonstrates that catalysis and diffusion are strongly intertwined, where the chemical conversions give rise to new stochastic trajectories that were absent if the substrate DNA was homogeneous. The C →U deamination profiles in both analytical predictions and experiments exhibit a strong contextual dependence, where the conversion rate of each target site is strongly contingent on the identities of other surrounding targets, with the intrusive model showing an excellent fit to the data. These methods can be applied to deduce sequence-dependent catalytic signatures of other DNA modification enzymes, with potential applications to cancer, gene regulation, and epigenetics.

  4. Random-walk enzymes

    PubMed Central

    Mak, Chi H.; Pham, Phuong; Afif, Samir A.; Goodman, Myron F.

    2015-01-01

    Enzymes that rely on random walk to search for substrate targets in a heterogeneously dispersed medium can leave behind complex spatial profiles of their catalyzed conversions. The catalytic signatures of these random-walk enzymes are the result of two coupled stochastic processes: scanning and catalysis. Here we develop analytical models to understand the conversion profiles produced by these enzymes, comparing an intrusive model, in which scanning and catalysis are tightly coupled, against a loosely coupled passive model. Diagrammatic theory and path-integral solutions of these models revealed clearly distinct predictions. Comparison to experimental data from catalyzed deaminations deposited on single-stranded DNA by the enzyme activation-induced deoxycytidine deaminase (AID) demonstrates that catalysis and diffusion are strongly intertwined, where the chemical conversions give rise to new stochastic trajectories that were absent if the substrate DNA was homogeneous. The C → U deamination profiles in both analytical predictions and experiments exhibit a strong contextual dependence, where the conversion rate of each target site is strongly contingent on the identities of other surrounding targets, with the intrusive model showing an excellent fit to the data. These methods can be applied to deduce sequence-dependent catalytic signatures of other DNA modification enzymes, with potential applications to cancer, gene regulation, and epigenetics. PMID:26465508

  5. Endless self-avoiding walks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Clisby, Nathan

    2013-06-01

    We introduce a self-avoiding walk model for which end-effects are completely eliminated. We enumerate the number of these walks for various lattices in dimensions two and three, and use these enumerations to study the properties of this model. We find that endless self-avoiding walks have the same connective constant as self-avoiding walks, and the same Flory exponent ν. However, there is no power law correction to the exponential number growth for this new model, i.e. the critical exponent γ = 1 exactly in any dimension. In addition, the number growth has no analytic corrections to scaling, and we have convincing numerical evidence to support the conjecture that the amplitude for the number growth is a universal quantity. The technique by which end-effects are eliminated may be generalized to other models of polymers such as interacting self-avoiding walks.

  6. Quantum walks on quotient graphs

    SciTech Connect

    Krovi, Hari; Brun, Todd A.

    2007-06-15

    A discrete-time quantum walk on a graph {gamma} is the repeated application of a unitary evolution operator to a Hilbert space corresponding to the graph. If this unitary evolution operator has an associated group of symmetries, then for certain initial states the walk will be confined to a subspace of the original Hilbert space. Symmetries of the original graph, given by its automorphism group, can be inherited by the evolution operator. We show that a quantum walk confined to the subspace corresponding to this symmetry group can be seen as a different quantum walk on a smaller quotient graph. We give an explicit construction of the quotient graph for any subgroup H of the automorphism group and illustrate it with examples. The automorphisms of the quotient graph which are inherited from the original graph are the original automorphism group modulo the subgroup H used to construct it. The quotient graph is constructed by removing the symmetries of the subgroup H from the original graph. We then analyze the behavior of hitting times on quotient graphs. Hitting time is the average time it takes a walk to reach a given final vertex from a given initial vertex. It has been shown in earlier work [Phys. Rev. A 74, 042334 (2006)] that the hitting time for certain initial states of a quantum walks can be infinite, in contrast to classical random walks. We give a condition which determines whether the quotient graph has infinite hitting times given that they exist in the original graph. We apply this condition for the examples discussed and determine which quotient graphs have infinite hitting times. All known examples of quantum walks with hitting times which are short compared to classical random walks correspond to systems with quotient graphs much smaller than the original graph; we conjecture that the existence of a small quotient graph with finite hitting times is necessary for a walk to exhibit a quantum speedup.

  7. Design of a walking robot

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Whittaker, William; Dowling, Kevin

    1994-01-01

    Carnegie Mellon University's Autonomous Planetary Exploration Program (APEX) is currently building the Daedalus robot; a system capable of performing extended autonomous planetary exploration missions. Extended autonomy is an important capability because the continued exploration of the Moon, Mars and other solid bodies within the solar system will probably be carried out by autonomous robotic systems. There are a number of reasons for this - the most important of which are the high cost of placing a man in space, the high risk associated with human exploration and communication delays that make teleoperation infeasible. The Daedalus robot represents an evolutionary approach to robot mechanism design and software system architecture. Daedalus incorporates key features from a number of predecessor systems. Using previously proven technologies, the Apex project endeavors to encompass all of the capabilities necessary for robust planetary exploration. The Ambler, a six-legged walking machine was developed by CMU for demonstration of technologies required for planetary exploration. In its five years of life, the Ambler project brought major breakthroughs in various areas of robotic technology. Significant progress was made in: mechanism and control, by introducing a novel gait pattern (circulating gait) and use of orthogonal legs; perception, by developing sophisticated algorithms for map building; and planning, by developing and implementing the Task Control Architecture to coordinate tasks and control complex system functions. The APEX project is the successor of the Ambler project.

  8. Design of a walking robot

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Whittaker, William; Dowling, Kevin

    1994-03-01

    Carnegie Mellon University's Autonomous Planetary Exploration Program (APEX) is currently building the Daedalus robot; a system capable of performing extended autonomous planetary exploration missions. Extended autonomy is an important capability because the continued exploration of the Moon, Mars and other solid bodies within the solar system will probably be carried out by autonomous robotic systems. There are a number of reasons for this - the most important of which are the high cost of placing a man in space, the high risk associated with human exploration and communication delays that make teleoperation infeasible. The Daedalus robot represents an evolutionary approach to robot mechanism design and software system architecture. Daedalus incorporates key features from a number of predecessor systems. Using previously proven technologies, the Apex project endeavors to encompass all of the capabilities necessary for robust planetary exploration. The Ambler, a six-legged walking machine was developed by CMU for demonstration of technologies required for planetary exploration. In its five years of life, the Ambler project brought major breakthroughs in various areas of robotic technology. Significant progress was made in: mechanism and control, by introducing a novel gait pattern (circulating gait) and use of orthogonal legs; perception, by developing sophisticated algorithms for map building; and planning, by developing and implementing the Task Control Architecture to coordinate tasks and control complex system functions. The APEX project is the successor of the Ambler project.

  9. Walking indoors, walking outdoors: an fMRI study

    PubMed Central

    Dalla Volta, Riccardo; Fasano, Fabrizio; Cerasa, Antonio; Mangone, Graziella; Quattrone, Aldo; Buccino, Giovanni

    2015-01-01

    An observation/execution matching system for walking has not been assessed yet. The present fMRI study was aimed at assessing whether, as for object-directed actions, an observation/execution matching system is active for walking and whether the spatial context of walking (open or narrow space) recruits different neural correlates. Two experimental conditions were employed. In the execution condition, while being scanned, participants performed walking on a rolling cylinder located just outside the scanner. The same action was performed also while observing a video presenting either an open space (a country field) or a narrow space (a corridor). In the observation condition, participants observed a video presenting an individual walking on the same cylinder on which the actual action was executed, the open space video and the narrow space video, respectively. Results showed common bilateral activations in the dorsal premotor/supplementary motor areas and in the posterior parietal lobe for both execution and observation of walking, thus supporting a matching system for this action. Moreover, specific sectors of the occipital–temporal cortex and the middle temporal gyrus were consistently active when processing a narrow space versus an open one, thus suggesting their involvement in the visuo-motor transformation required when walking in a narrow space. We forward that the present findings may have implications for rehabilitation of gait and sport training. PMID:26483745

  10. Comparison of heart rate responses. Water walking versus treadmill walking.

    PubMed

    Whitley, J D; Schoene, L L

    1987-10-01

    The purpose of this study was to compare heart rate responses to water walking versus treadmill walking to determine whether the responses were of sufficient magnitude to elicit cardiorespiratory training effects. The heart rates of 12 healthy, female college students were measured immediately after walking in waist-deep water and on a treadmill at the same distance, durations, and speeds (2.55, 2.77, 3.02, and 3.31 km/hr). A significant increase in heart rate with increased speeds resulted from water walking (p less than .05); from rest to the fastest speed, it was 135% (96 bpm). For treadmill walking, the increase of 19% (13 bpm) was not significant. The heart rates for the water condition were significantly higher (p less than .05) at each speed. These findings indicate that water walking could serve as an effective exercise mode, for example, for cardiorespiratory fitness for individuals who are unable to perform such weight-bearing activities as jogging, fast walking, cycling, and dancing. PMID:3659133