Energy analysis of human stumbling: the limitations of recovery

A. Forner Cordero, Hubertus F.J.M. Koopman, F.C.T. van der Helm

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)


This study has analyzed the segmental energy changes in the recovery from a stumble induced during walking on a treadmill. Three strategies emerged according to the behavior of the perturbed limb, elevating, lowering, and delayed lowering. These three strategies showed different changes in the segmental energy with respect to normal gait. In the elevating strategy, the energy loss induced by the stumble was restored during the perturbed step and reached normal levels during the recovery step. The largest energy changes occurred in the lowering and delayed lowering strategies during the double stance (DS) phase. Moreover, in some of these trials there was energy absorption during the double stance phase for several strides after the perturbation. The most challenging perturbations had longer duration or occurred at mid-swing, triggering delayed lowering or lowering strategies, because more strides and larger energy changes were needed to recover, suggesting a trade-off between stability and energy efficiency.
Original languageUndefined
Pages (from-to)243-254
Number of pages12
JournalGait & posture
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2005


  • METIS-227533
  • Stumbling
  • Energy analysis
  • Gait perturbation
  • IR-77666
  • Recovery strategy

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