Validation of Foot-Strike Assessment Using Wearable Sensors During Running

J Athl Train. 2020 Dec 1;55(12):1307-1310. doi: 10.4085/1062-6050-0520.19.


Wearable sensors are capable of capturing foot-strike positioning, which lends insight into landing biomechanics during running. The purpose of our study was to assess the relationship between foot-strike categorization and foot-strike angle during running to validate the sensor-derived foot-strike outcome. Twenty collegiate cross-country athletes (12 females, 8 males) ran at 2 speeds on an instrumented treadmill. RunScribe sensors were used to determine foot-strike categorizations (1-5 = rearfoot, 6-10 = midfoot, 11-16 = forefoot), and foot-strike angles were simultaneously assessed with 3-dimensional motion capture bilaterally. We calculated Pearson r correlation coefficients to compare foot-strike categorizations and angles at initial contact over 800 steps as well as sensor foot-strike identification accuracy. A strong, inverse correlation between foot-strike categorizations and foot-strike angles was present (r = -0.86, P < .001). Overall, the sensors demonstrated 78% accuracy (rearfoot = 72.5%, midfoot = 55.3%, forefoot = 95.4%). These results support the concurrent validity of the sensor-derived foot-strike measures.

Keywords: gait analysis; validity; wearable technology.

Publication types

  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Biomechanical Phenomena
  • Exercise Test
  • Female
  • Foot
  • Gait / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Monitoring, Physiologic
  • Running / physiology*
  • Wearable Electronic Devices*