Ambulatory Assessment of the Dynamic Margin of Stability Using an Inertial Sensor Network

Michelangelo Guaitolini, Federica Aprigliano, Andrea Mannini, Silvestro Micera, Vito Monaco, Angelo Maria Sabatini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Loss of stability is a precursor to falling and therefore represents a leading cause of injury, especially in fragile people. Thus, dynamic stability during activities of daily living (ADLs) needs to be considered to assess balance control and fall risk. The dynamic margin of stability (MOS) is often used as an indicator of how the body center of mass is located and moves relative to the base of support. In this work, we propose a magneto-inertial measurement unit (MIMU)-based method to assess the MOS of a gait. Six young healthy subjects were asked to walk on a treadmill at different velocities while wearing MIMUs on their lower limbs and pelvis. We then assessed the MOS by computing the lower body displacement with respect to the leading inverse kinematics approach. The results were compared with those obtained using a camera-based system in terms of root mean square deviation (RMSD) and correlation coefficient (ρ). We obtained a RMSD of ≤1.80 cm and ρ ≥ 0.85 for each walking velocity. The findings revealed that our method is comparable to camera-based systems in terms of accuracy, suggesting that it may represent a strategy to assess stability during ADLs in unstructured environments.

Original languageEnglish
JournalSensors (Basel, Switzerland)
Issue number19
Publication statusPublished - Sep 23 2019


  • gait analysis
  • inertial sensors
  • margin of stability
  • stability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Biochemistry
  • Instrumentation
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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