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Every horse has its own natural movement characteristics, such as stride duration, speed and stride length. Traditionally, scientists had been able to evaluate the movement of horses visually. But the human eye is only capable of registering images with a frequency of 20 Hz. This makes the human capacity for assessment insufficient in order to arrive at a consistent and objective evaluation of the functioning of the horse’s locomotor system, especially when diagnosing lameness – much less when predicting a horse’s performance.

A recent innovation for the measurement of these characteristics in different horses is the high cost 3D motion camera equipment. This can produce accurate data but it requires a lengthy, laborious set-up in a very controlled environment. The obtained information is only from the side and the few strides that are in view of the camera.

In the EquiMoves project we developed a system that uses Inertia’s sensor nodes as mobile measuring units attached to the legs of the horse, the withers and the head. The movement coordination, temporal and spatial gait parameters are extracted from the signals retrieved in all gaits of the horse. The analysis quantifies scientifically the differences between horses but also response on training, shoeing, nerve blocking, medication, etc.

The result of the EquiMoves project is commercialized under the brand name Equi-Pro®.

Horse wearing the wireless gait analysis system

Data Collection and Analysis

The system collects data from horses instrumented with ProMove-mini sensor nodes on the legs, the withers and the head. Each node is attached using a custom made holster.


Attachment modalities of ProMove-mini sensor nodes to the horse

The sensors are set to a sampling rate of 200Hz, with the low g accelerometer set at ± 16g and the high-g accelerometer set at ± 200g. The data is wirelessly transmitted to the Inertia Gateway and also stored using the internal memory of each sensor. Synchronization among all sensors is less than 100ns.

The accurate and precise detection of the stride parameters is a crucial prerequisite for the proper determination of temporal and spatial stride characteristics. Using various custom-built algorithms, we determine the relevant 3D motion parameters for assisting the researchers and veterinary practitioners in early detection of lameness in horses.

The figures below show some of the results of the data analysis presented in the graphical user interface.

Surface and gait detection

Results overview for a selected period – symmetry index, Max_diff, Min_diff

Results for upper body – vertical displacement for head, withers and sacrum

Results for upper body – Max_diff and Min_diff for head, withers and sacrum

Results for legs – timing of footfalls, swing intensity, stride duration

Results for legs – front limbs adduction and abduction
Results for legs – front limbs retraction and protraction


More information can be found on the product website