Herein, we investigated the effect of friction between foot sole and floor on the external forward moment about the body center of mass (COM) in normal and shuffling gaits. Five young male adults walked with normal and shuffling gaits, under low- and high-friction surface conditions. The maximum external forward moment about the COM (MEFM-COM) in a normal gait appeared approximately at initial foot contact and was unaffected by floor condition. However, MEFM-COM in a shuffling gait under high-friction conditions exceeded that under low-friction conditions (p < 0.001). Therein, MEFM-COM increased with an increasing utilized coefficient of friction at initial foot contact; this effect was weaker during a normal gait. These findings indicate that increased friction between foot sole and floor might increase tripping risk during a shuffling gait, even in the absence of discrete physical obstacles.
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