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Open AccessArticle

Effect of IMU Design on IMU-Derived Stride Metrics for Running

Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sensors 2019, 19(11), 2601;
Received: 18 March 2019 / Revised: 30 May 2019 / Accepted: 5 June 2019 / Published: 7 June 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Physical Sensors)
Researchers employ foot-mounted inertial measurement units (IMUs) to estimate the three-dimensional trajectory of the feet as well as a rich array of gait parameters. However, the accuracy of those estimates depends critically on the limitations of the accelerometers and angular velocity gyros embedded in the IMU design. In this study, we reveal the effects of accelerometer range, gyro range, and sampling frequency on gait parameters (e.g., distance traveled, stride length, and stride angle) estimated using the zero-velocity update (ZUPT) method. The novelty and contribution of this work are that it: (1) quantifies these effects at mean speeds commensurate with competitive distance running (up to 6.4 m/s); (2) identifies the root causes of inaccurate foot trajectory estimates obtained from the ZUPT method; and (3) offers important engineering recommendations for selecting accurate IMUs for studying human running. The results demonstrate that the accuracy of the estimated gait parameters generally degrades with increased mean running speed and with decreased accelerometer range, gyro range, and sampling frequency. In particular, the saturation of the accelerometer and/or gyro induced during running for some IMU designs may render those designs highly inaccurate for estimating gait parameters. View Full-Text
Keywords: wearable sensors; ZUPT; sensor requirements; gait wearable sensors; ZUPT; sensor requirements; gait
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Potter, M.V.; Ojeda, L.V.; Perkins, N.C.; Cain, S.M. Effect of IMU Design on IMU-Derived Stride Metrics for Running. Sensors 2019, 19, 2601.

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