Principles of Energetics and Stability in Legged Locomotion

  • Jeremy D. WongEmail author
  • J. Maxwell Donelan
Reference work entry


People are skilled walkers and runners. We move with economy, agility, and speed and can do so even while we travel through our rough and variable world. Present-day humanoid robots are certainly much less capable than humans at accomplishing the same locomotor tasks [1]. One potential path to improving the design and control of robots is to draw inspiration and guidance from biology. That is, we may be able to build more capable robots if we better understand how people move. One argument against this possibility is that humans and robots are comprised of fundamentally different components. Where robots are built using metals, encoders, wires, computers, magnetic motors, and batteries, humans have evolved to use bone, sensory cells, nerves, brains, muscles, and food.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Human Performance Laboratory, Department of KinesiologyUniversity of CalgaryCalgaryCanada
  2. 2.Department of Biomedical Physiology and KinesiologySimon Fraser UniversityBurnabyCanada

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