A stiffness-varying model of human gait

X. H. Duan, R. H. Allen, J. Q. Sun

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We report on a conceptual two degrees of freedom (2 DOF) human gait model, which incorporates nonlinear joint stiffness as a stabilizing agent. Specifically, muscle spring-like property provides inherent stability during gait move-meat using a nonlinear angular spring and dash pot at each joint. The instability problem of the gait model in direct dynamic analysis is overcome by simulating the human co-contrastion muscle function. By developing dynamic system stability requirements and hypothesizing a minimum joint stiffness criterion, we determine time-varying joint stiffness. Optimum joint stiffness are present for varying gait pattern, stride lengths and cadences. We conclude that nonlinear joint stiffness can be incorporated into gait models to overcome stability problems inherent in such linkage models.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)518-524
Number of pages7
JournalMedical Engineering and Physics
Issue number6
StatePublished - Sep 1 1997


  • Gait
  • Joint stifness
  • Model

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Biomedical Engineering

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