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Gait Assessment

The Shriners Gait Lab assesses children with walking disorders and is a joint project of BC Children’s Hospital, Sunny Hill Health Centre, and the Gizeh Shriners of BC and Yukon.
Your team

​​Who are we?

One step at a time....

Your team is made up of people from different specialties that include orthopedic surgeons, physiotherapists, and kinesiologists. We also work with orthotists if your child has leg braces.

What do we do?

  •  use high-tech motion analysis equipment, similar to equipment used to make video games, to helps us understand and resolve movement problems in your child

We create a report that goes to you, your family doctor, your referring physician and your child's physiotherapist. The report includes recommendations on how your community professionals can work with you and your child to help him or her improve. 

Who Do We See?

Specialists refer children to our Gait Lab when they may require surgery, when they need bracing changes, or if they may need some other related kind of therapy. Most of the children that we see have cerebral palsy, spina bifida, or traumatic brain injury, and may or may not use braces or walkers. 

The Shriners Gait Lab opened in 1996 and sees 250 children every year.

Your appointment

Please arrive at least 15 minutes ahead of your appointment time and check in with our receptionist at the main entrance on Slocan street. You can ask for directions to the Gait Lab at reception. 

At the Gait Lab you will meet one of our physiotherapists. The physiotherapist will do a number of muscle tests and joint range of motions measurements. 

Electrodes [sensors] that look like bandages will be placed over some important muscles. These electrodes allow the Gait Lab staff to see when your child's muscles are working. When the electrodes are in place, we will put on the reflective markers that allow our motion capture system [special computer] to "see" your child. Your child will walk in a straight line from one end of the lab to the other while the cameras pick up the motion. The whole appointment will take approximately 2 ½ hours.

What to Bring

  • tight-fitting shorts for your child so the Gait Lab staff can see exactly how he or she moves
  • all your child's walking aids
  • a camera!

Please don't put skin cream on your child on the day of the assessment.


The Shriners Gait Lab, Sunny Hill Health Centre for Children, 2012  

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See the glossary for definitions of the words used on this page.

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