Influence of locomotion speed on biomechanical subtask and muscle synergy

Kai Gui, Dingguo Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (SciVal)


This paper investigates the relationship of biomechanical subtasks, and muscle synergies with various locomotion speeds. Ground reaction force (GRF) of eight healthy subjects is measured synchronously by force plates of treadmill at five different speeds ranging from 0.5 m/s to 1.5 m/s. Four basic biomechanical subtasks, body support, propulsion, swing, and heel strike preparation, are identified according to GRF. Meanwhile, electromyography (EMG) data, used to extract muscle synergies, are collected from lower limb muscles. EMG signals are segmented periodically based on GRF with the heel strike as the split points. Variability accounted for (VAF) is applied to determine the number of muscle synergies. We find that four muscle synergies can be extracted in all five situations by non-negative matrix factorization (NMF). Furthermore, the four muscle synergies and biomechanical subtasks keep invariant as the walking speed changes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)209-215
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Electromyography and Kinesiology
Early online date3 Aug 2016
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2016


  • Biomechanical subtask
  • Electromyography
  • Locomotion
  • Muscle synergy
  • Walking speed

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience (miscellaneous)
  • Biophysics
  • Clinical Neurology


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