The purpose of the present study was to investigate the association of neural control between walking and running, and in particular, how these two gait modes at different velocities are controlled (thus, either dependent on the gait mode or on velocity) by the central nervous system (CNS). The subjects were fully-adapted (acquiring modified motor patterns) to either walk or run on a split-belt treadmill driven in split mode (asymmetry in the velocities of two belts at 1.0 and 2.0 m s−1). Subsequently, the extent of adaptation transfer (i.e., how the adaptation affected the subsequent task execution) to walking and running at three different velocities in the tied mode (symmetrical velocities) at 0.75 m s−1: reflecting a preference to walk, 1.50 m s−1: a preference to both walk and to run, 2.25 m s−1: and a preference to run) was tested. Both walking and running on the split-belt resulted in the emergence of a significant aftereffect (asymmetrical movement) at all of the velocities tested when the adapted modes were executed subsequently (i.e., walking after adapting to walk and running after adapting to run). For contrasting modes (i.e., running after adapting to walk and walking after adapting to run), in contrast, such aftereffects were far less evident under all the velocities, thus showing only limited transfer across gait modes. The results demonstrate a clear mode-dependency in the neural control between human walking and running. In addition, only for walking, there was a degree of velocity-dependency.
- © 2015. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd