Comparison of Both Legs EMG Symmetry during Over-Ground Walking and Stair Walking in Stroke Patients

  • Jeong, Mu-Geun (Department of Physical Therapy, General Graduate School, Catholic University of Daegu) ;
  • Kim, Joong-Hwi (Department of Physical Therapy, College of Medical Science, Catholic University of Daegu)
  • Received : 2015.07.23
  • Accepted : 2015.08.20
  • Published : 2015.08.25


Purpose: Gait is the most basic element when evaluating the quality of life with activities of daily living under ordinary life circumstances. Symmetrical use of the lower extremities requires complicated coordination of all limbs. Thus, this study examined asymmetry of muscle activity quadriceps femoris and tibialis anterior as a baseline for training during over-ground walking and stair walking of stroke patients. Methods: Subjects were 14 stroke patients included as one experimental group. Gait speed used in this study was determined by the subject. Low extremity paretic and non-paretic EMG was compared using the surface EMG system. Results: The low extremity EMG difference was statistically significant during over-ground walking and stair walking (p<0.05). The result of low extremity EMG substituted symmetry ratio formula was compared to EMG symmetry ratio in both legs during over-ground walking and stair walking. The average symmetry ratio of quadriceps femoris during over-ground walking was 0.65, and average symmetry ratio of quadriceps femoris during stair walking was 0.47, with significant difference (p<0.05). Conclusion: EMG data was higher in stair walking than over-ground walking. However, in the comparison of symmetry ratio, asymmetric EMG of quadriceps femoris was significantly increased during stair walking. These findings suggested that application of stair walking for strengthening of both legs can be positive, but the key factor is maintaining asymmetrical posture of both legs. Therefore, physical therapists should make an effort to reduce asymmetry of quadriceps femoris power during stair walking by stroke patients.


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