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What Is Clinical 3D Gait Analysis?

Gait Analysis

Here at Cornwall Physio we have some of the best clinical gait analysis facilities in the UK. When we launched The Run Lab® back in 2017 we became one of the first Physiotherapy clinics in the UK to provide ‘makerless’ 3D gait analysis, creating a specialist 3D gait analysis centre here in the South west.

​We get lots of questions asking about what ‘clinical’ gait analysis actually is, so here’s a bit more about our 3D gait analysis facilities here at The Run Lab®. [...]

"My Local Shoe Shop Offers ‘Gait Analysis’,
How Is This Different?"

Clinical gait analysis is entirely different to any shoe shop gait analysis. Shoe shop assessments are to help you choose shoes, not to diagnose injuries or movement issues.

Here in the South West we have some great independent running shops, including one who has recently introduced a 3D system to their shoe fitting service.

Shoe shops provide an entirely different service to what we do here at The Run Lab. Shoe shops help clients to chose shoes based on their running technique and foot shape. Shoe shop ‘gait analysis’ is about choosing shoes. Clinical gait analysis, like that provided here at The Run Lab, is about diagnosing movement issues or injuries and providing bespoke technique advice.

Our Clinical 3D Gait Analysis

The term ‘Clinical gait analysis’ is used to describe running and walking assessments carried out by a clinician, most often a Physiotherapist or podiatrist. Here at The Run Lab® our running and walking assessments use the latest 3D gait analysis technology, designed specifically for clinicians.

During these sessions medical knowledge and clinical assessments are combined with gait analysis data. Just looking at how someone runs or walks only tells us part of the story. We make sure we perform other measurements and movement tests in the treatment room to confirm or challenge how things appear to look on the treadmill.

Here at The Run Lab® we combine THREE different assessment tools, which together help to form a complete picture of how each person moves.

Our Gait Analysis Tools

Motion Metrix

We use a version of this software designed specifically for physio’s and podiatrists. This 3D gait analysis technology provides data on your joint angles, forces and running technique. This information is particularly useful when we’re diagnosing injuries or looking to improve running performance. Our biomechanical knowledge helps us to interpret each athletes data and prescribe physio treatments, exercises and training programmes.

Motion Metrix

Force Plates

Force Plates

We use these to test your strength. They are the best way to pick up imbalances left and right, to test overall power, force production, elasticity and even balance.


We use this to give greater detail on your foot and ankle movement and loading patterns. This is particularly useful for diagnosing issues in the lower leg and foot and allows us to make custom 3D-printed orthotics and/or measure how your footwear is affecting your movement.


What About Shoe Selection?

The most important thing when choosing shoes is comfort. Comfort has been shown to be far more important than anything else. Try lots of shoes on and find the one that feels best. Specialist running shops are a great place to be able to compare different brands and styles and find something that feels comfortable.

Meanwhile, if you’re having a particular issue such as foot or knee pain when you run or walk then this requires a clinical assessment. Here at Cornwall Physio & The Run Lab we  will be able to diagnose the  problem and look to address the root cause. We have various sessions suitable for Runners including Physiotherapy sessions, clinical 3D gait analysis tests and sessions which combine the two.

To find out if you’re a good fit for The Run Lab, please get in touch. You can even request a free discovery visit. ​

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Lou Nicholettos

Lou Nicholettos

Lou has TWO Masters degrees- from the University of Birmingham and Kings College London. She is a Clinical Specialist Physiotherapist with over 15 years Physiotherapy experience. During her career she has been taught by and worked alongside, some of the most highly regarded international experts in Physiotherapy and Pain Science. Lou has become Cornwall’s go to physio for complex aches and pains, including sports injuries and spinal pain. Her areas of special interest include running injuries, tendon injuries, back pain and nerve pain. As a Running Specialist Physio Lou has quickly gained a reputation as one of the very best clinicians in the UK and treats athletes from across the South-West and beyond from her base in St Austell, Cornwall. Lou has provided Physiotherapy for the Great Britain Hockey team, numerous Great Britain Runners and Triathletes and international competitors from the sports of Athletics, Rugby, Netball, Squash and Swimming. Having worked with and been taught by some of the best Physio’s in the World, Lou founded Cornwall Physio to create a quality private clinic with world class facilities, right here in the South West. With Her Wealth Of Expertise, Lou Will Help You Perform At Your Best Whatever Your Hobbies And Goals.
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