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Book Review: Clinical Gait Analysis: Theory and Practice
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Title: Clinical Gait Analysis: Theory and Practice

Authors: Chris Kirtley
Publisher: Churchhill Livingstone, Elsevier; SLACK Incorporated; Number of pages: 308
Reviewed by: John Brinkmann, CPO/LPO, FAAOP(D)

 

Chris Kirtley, MD, PhD is a well-known contributor to the advancement of gait research. In Clinical Gait Analysis, he has provided a concise review of both research and clinical techniques. This text is divided into two main sections: 1) the explanation and quantification of gait parameters and 2) the qualitative aspects of gait we gain from observation and experience. Appropriate for those new to the field as well as seasoned professionals, Clinical Gait Analysis reviews the foundation of the study of gait in digestible pieces making this an excellent reference book for the busy practitioner.

 

While textbooks regarding the practice of gait analysis tend to be a bit dry, Kirtley weaves in tidbits of history and pop culture to provide additional insight. Multiple-choice questions sprinkled throughout the text allow the reader the opportunity to test their understanding of basic principles and the mathematical basis for the calculation of specific gait parameters. In short, Kirtley has created a gait textbook that is both readable and intriguing.

Another strength of this text is the thorough overview of laboratory-grade equipment in which Kirtley weighs their pros and cons in an unbiased perspective. Though many of us do not have access to a 3-dimensional motion capture system, Kirtley explains the function and limitations of such systems and provides encouragement to the clinician for the quantification of gait parameters even if all they have at their disposal is a yardstick and a stopwatch.

Throughout the text the reader may notice a handful of potentially distracting typos and a rare mislabeled graph—which is fine if you’re paying attention but may be confusing to a novice. Overall the images and figures within the text are clear and decipherable, yet some of the translation is lost by printing in grayscale—especially the images related to plantar pressure measurement.

Summary

In summary, Clinical Gait Analysis will make an excellent addition to your reference library whether you are a student or a practitioner.

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