A study of position independent algorithms for phone-based gait frequency detection

Tarashansky A, Vathsangam H, Sukhatme GS.
Conf. Proc. IEEE Eng. Med. Biol. Soc. 2014; 2014: 5984-5987.
(Copyright © 2014, IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers)) DOI 10.1109/EMBC.2014.6944992 PMID 25571360


Estimating gait frequency is an important component in the detection and diagnosis of various medical conditions. Smartphone-based kinematic sensors offer a window of opportunity in free- living gait frequency estimation. The main issue with smartphone-based gait frequency estimation algorithms is how to adjust for variations in orientation and location of the phone on the human body. While numerous algorithms have been implemented to account for these differences, little work has been done in comparing these algorithms. In this study, we compare various position independent algorithms to determine which are more suited to robust gait frequency estimation. Using sensor data collected from volunteers walking with a smartphone, we examine the effect of using three different time series with the magnitude, weighted sum, and closest vertical component algorithms described in the paper. We also test two different methods of extracting step frequency: time domain peak counting and spectral analysis. The results show that the choice of time series does not significantly affect the accuracy of frequency measurements. Furthermore, both time domain and spectral approaches show comparable results. However, time domain approaches are sensitive to false-positives while spectral approaches require a minimum set of repetitive measurements. Our study suggests a hybrid approach where both time-domain and spectral approaches be used together to complement each other’s shortcomings.

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