Date of Award
Master of Science (MS)
Kinesiology & Public Health Education
Only twelve humans have stepped on the Moon for a mere 80 hours. Further, noneof that Lunar exposure has been within the last 50 years. NASA’s Artemis Program recently announced that the next manned missions to the Moon will be scheduled for 2024 and 2025. With only a few years to prepare, it is pertinent that training for prospective astronauts reflects current scientific knowledge to ensure safety. In this study, the coordinative gait structures under 1.0g (Earth), as well as simulated 0.38g (Martian) and 0.17g (Lunar), were analyzed to discover critical changes in gait that may occur in these environments. In the current study, participants walked and ran on a treadmill while being supported by ARGOS (Active Response Gravity Offload System) which simulates fractional gravity conditions. The Vicon motion capture system was utilized and coupled with MatLab’s PManalyzer to capture and analyze participants’ coordinative gait structures. Results show that there are significant changes (p<0.05) in the coordinative structures under simulated Lunar and Martian gravity. Changes were found when the speed on the treadmill increased. A skipping component was expressed during Lunar and Martian running trials. Findings suggest that if astronauts are trained how to skip bilaterally under these conditions, learning time would be reduced with fractional gravity ambulation.
Smith, Elizabeth Nicole, "Effects Of Fractional Gravity On Human Gait" (2022). Theses and Dissertations. 4294.
Available for download on Friday, June 14, 2024