Dafinë Ibrahimi Kaçuri1, Arben Boshnjaku1, Rilind Obertinca1, Naser Lahu2, *
1Physiotherapy Department, Faculty of Medicine, University “Fehmi Agani” in Gjakova, Kosovo - 2Physiotherapy Department, Faculty of Medicine, University of Prishtina “Hasan Prishtina”, Prishtina, Kosovo
Introduction: Recent studies have revealed that the usage of mobile phones while walking has a negative impact on its quality, directly influencing the length of the step and the angle of the foot. This implies that smartphone users have a weaker cycle of walking compared to those who do not use smartphones, and their speed is relatively low because of the impact of texting while walking. Thus these studies analyze the impact of smartphone use on walking quality.
Material and methods: The experimental method used was designed under three conditions: walking, reading, and texting while walking, with participants required to walk in a 15 meters corridor with no barriers while using their mobile phone in three phases. The experiment was conducted using PODOSMART technology. The data used from this technology were the length of the walking cycle, cadence, speed and the symmetry of legs.
Results: Significant results (p<0.001) were observed when comparing the speed of walking without and while using a smart phone to read or type. Additionally, a high correlation was found between body height and cycle length in three assessed conditions (walking, walking while reading and walking while typing). Higher speed, lower cycle length and higher BMI were the best predictors to the increase of steps per minute.
Conclusion: The usage of smartphones to read or type while walking significantly impacts the quality of walking, thus decreasing the length, speed of the step, and cadence. Furthermore, it affects the dynamic stability of the active population that can be a serious concern for their future's walking balance, as well as a potential increased risk for the development of disability and morbidity.
Gait analysis, mobile phones, typing, walking cycle.