Age-related changes in mechanical and metabolic energy during typical gait
Faculty of Sciences. Biology
Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences
Gait and posture. - Oxford
, p. 495-501
University of Antwerp
The purpose of the study was to investigate and report age-related changes in walking energy expenditure using different methods of energy estimation. For 81 children and 16 adults (335 years) energy expenditure was investigated by using the following methods: analysis of energy changes of the centre of body mass (external and internal mechanical work), sum of segmental energies, sum of net joint work and gross and net metabolic cost, as well as net non-dimensional oxygen cost. Different methods of energy estimation not only show different outcome results but also different age-related changes. Significant changes were found for negative net joint work, external mechanical work and recovery as well as sum of segmental energies, until 9, 11 and 19 years respectively. Positive net joint work showed no differences between age groups and the differences for internal work did not suggest development. Metabolic energy showed significant changes until adult age. Gross cost decreases with increasing age in children and, although more gradually, still in adolescents. Net and net non-dimensional cost shows a more constant decrease with increasing age until adulthood. Therefore, the choice of estimation method and the use of age-related reference data when evaluating young patients should be carefully considered. For interpretation of oxygen consumption in children the use of net is superior to gross cost, but even after net non-dimensional normalization, age-related reference data should be used.