Characterizing Structural Changes to Estimate Walking Gait Balance

  • Jonathon Fagert
  • Mostafa Mirshekari
  • Shijia Pan
  • Pei Zhang
  • Hae Young Noh
Conference paper
Part of the Conference Proceedings of the Society for Experimental Mechanics Series book series (CPSEMS)


We present a method for improving left-right walking gait balance using structural floor vibration sensing by characterizing changes in structural properties in the sensing area. Understanding and measuring human gait balance can be used to assess overall health status, mobility, and rehabilitation progress. The key research challenge is that structural properties in the sensing area may differ from one footstep location to the next, resulting in inaccurate footstep force and balance estimations. To address this challenge, our method performs sensor selection using the insight that some sensors in the sensor network are in a similar structural region as the footstep location and, therefore, are not as effected by the observed variations in structural properties as the other sensors. We evaluate the performance of our method by conducting uncontrolled real-world walking experiments in a residential structure. This evaluation shows that our method achieves a 1.6X reduction in force estimation error and a 2.4X reduction in balance estimation as compared to the baseline approach.


Structural vibrations Footstep ground reaction forces Sensor selection Walking gait balance Structural identification 


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Copyright information

© The Society for Experimental Mechanics, Inc. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jonathon Fagert
    • 1
  • Mostafa Mirshekari
    • 1
  • Shijia Pan
    • 2
  • Pei Zhang
    • 2
  • Hae Young Noh
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Civil and Environmental EngineeringCarnegie Mellon UniversityPittsburghUSA
  2. 2.Department of Electrical and Computer EngineeringCarnegie Mellon UniversityMoffett FieldUSA

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