Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Gait Analysis Completed

A couple of months ago, I read an article in Runner's World about this writer going to New York for a running assessment (see summary article here). A team of people put this writer at different stations, evaluated her, and then gave her a report and rehab exercises. I got curious. She even mentioned about how she had done a Gait Analysis previously, but it wasn't as detailed as what they did in New York.

What the hell was a Gait Analysis? According to Active's website, a Gait Analysis uses a map to reveal the programming of everything happening within your body—from kinesthetic awareness and habit to individual levels of mobility, stability, flexibility, and functional strength. The analysis of all these different elements taken together is what creates a complete picture of a person's gait.

Hmmm...I'm having a great deal of back issues and feet issues. I wondered if this is why I am having these issues. Could my running form be the mysterious answer to my problems with pain. I decided to get myself analyzed while I run. So, I started researching where to go for a running clinic like the writer. I looked at New York and California. And then, I found all sorts of testing at Memorial Hermann Ironman Sports Medicine Institute in Houston right down the street from my work. For $75, I could get the Gait Analysis and other things analyzed if I wanted. If this didn't work, then I would look into trying the more expensive running clinic in New York.

After some scheduling conflicts, I finally made it there to meet Kimberly. We went in to a back area with a treadmill and cameras. I told her my concerns about my back and she brought in another lady to do some tests and give me advice. Then, I got on the treadmill and started the test. When it was done, she asked about my shoes and I told her that I wore Saucony's equivalent to the Asics Nimbus, but I didn't think I was happy about them. I also mentioned that I never had any body issues with my previous wornout pair of Nimbus. She immediately noticed that I overpronate and my current shoes weren't helping me at all. She told me to look at Asics GT 1000 or 2000 and then go back to Nimbus if those didn't work. I did have pretty decent form. However, she identified some problem areas. I point my toes up when I run and angle them outwards. I also need to lean forward when I run and straighten out my back leg when pushing off. These are all things that could be affecting my back.

This is my left leg mid-stance view. Picture by Memorial Hermann Ironman Sports Medicine Institute.
Afterwards, she asked me to show her the foam rolling exercises that I currently do and she greatly improved on one and added more to my repertoire. She also gave me some exercises to strengthen my back and help with stability. After a couple of days, I received a detailed report (which I only gave you the highlights on this post), PowerPoint of all of the exercises, and a video.

Since the analysis, I bought the Asics GT 2000 shoes and absolutely love them.

Aren't they beautiful? And not freaking pink.
My right foot feels like I'm running on clouds in Heaven. I am still having issues with my left foot, but I'm handling that with my Orthopedic doctor who did my bunion surgery. I have had minimal to no back issues since the analysis and especially during my runs. Although, I'm only doing a handful of the exercises everyday. When I get back from my marathon, I'm going to work on incorporating all of them into my daily routine. Right now, I do the hip abduction (30 reps), hip bridge (2 sets of 15reps), clamshell hip abduction (30 reps), and planks (2 sets of 30 seconds) every morning when I wake up.

This is the hip abduction. Picture by Memorial Hermann Ironman Sports Medicine Institute.
I do the foam rolling every time I run and only some of the time when I'm not running.
My absolute favorite (but oh so painful) foam rolling exercise. Picture by Memorial Hermann Ironman Sports Medicine Institute.
I feel like my money was well spent with Kimberly and this Gait Analysis. I highly recommend doing one if you are a training for a marathon.

Have you ever done a Gait Analysis? What did you think?

Speaking of marathon...10 FREAKING DAYS until my first ever marathon. I'm not sure how this is going to go since my training has been less than stellar. But whatever, I'm doing it. Hopefully, they won't sweep me up in the bus of shame, because I didn't make it under 6 hours, 30 minutes.


  1. Hey! Thanks for sharing your experience. I heard about it but I didn't know it was this cool! I run with GT 2000s and I love, love, love them! Can't wait to hear about your marathon experience. Go girl!

    1. Oh yes, I gave you the short summarized version of everything that happened. I'm so glad I did it. And yes, I love my 2000s, too. So comfy. I'm never going away from Asics again.

      Thanks Cintia!

  2. I'm so excited to be following you in your marathon - can we track you as you go? Gait analysis is well worth it - and I think that price is amazing! Sometimes it's all you need - just some pointers. And well, shoes make a huge difference. Nice work Kristi - hope to catch you next week!

    1. They do not have a way to track me online. So, I will just update you via phone as soon as I can talk...move...have life back into me.

  3. I'm not sure they have a tracking thing online. I put in a question about it. I will send you my bib number a little bit later. I don't have it right now.

    And thanks so much Petra.


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