What is Biomechanical Assessment?
Biomechanics is an area of science concerned with the analysis of mechanics of human movement. Therefore, a biomechanical assessment (which you may hear referred to as gait analysis) involves an examination of the lower limbs, looking at their structure, alignment, strengths and weaknesses which will lead the clinician to a diagnosis and treatment planning.
It is true that us humans rarely find that our left and right sides are symmetrical. This also applies to the feet and legs as the foot has 26 bones, 30 joints and more than 100 muscles, tendons and ligaments. All these bear our body weight as we walk every day.
Our biomechanical examination is not just focused on the foot but includes the whole body including your posture and footwear, assessing the relationship between them all. The clinician will examine the lower limbs as a whole as they are closely connected and any pain in one area can be due to a weakness or structural problem in another area somewhere on the body.
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Benefits of a Biomechanical Assessment
This assessment will provide you with a comprehensive understanding of your problem and any underlying issues with the lower limbs and can be very beneficial if you are experiencing pain in your feet or lower limbs. This assessment is the starting point of your treatment and long term goals.
What Happens at a Biomechanical Assessment Appointment?
After a detailed medical history and discussing your pain issues and problems, the clinician will examine the different types of footwear you have brought with you. They will take some pictures of you standing and your posture (please wear shorts) to assess the structure of your foot/ankle, knees, hips and lower back. After this the clinician will discuss the findings with you and recommend an effective gait analysis treatment plan that may include a range of treatments such as orthotics insoles, exercises, or footwear advice.