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Further Studies on Locomotion of the Cheetah

Milton Hildebrand
Journal of Mammalogy
Vol. 42, No. 1 (Feb., 1961), pp. 84-91
DOI: 10.2307/1377246
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1377246
Page Count: 8
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Further Studies on Locomotion of the Cheetah
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Abstract

A high-speed motion picture camera was used to record the gaits of a captive cheetah. A previous study (Hildebrand, J. Mamm., 40: 481-495, 1959) is corrected (in regard to estimated speed and rate of stride) and new data presented on motions of the body at the walk, trot and gallop. The slow gallop (± 33 mph) differs from the fast gallop (± 56 mph) in that stride is shorter (though scarcely slower), and also in the use of the spine, duration of the support periods, placement of leading feet and paths followed by the feet between footfalls. Sharp flexion of wrist and ankle joints as their respective girdles pass over them is described and interpreted. The legs are extended relatively far forward (compared to horse) when they strike the ground. Frequent change of lead and sudden stops are described. The sequence of footfalls, phases of the stride and their duration are figured for the walk, trot, slow gallop and fast gallop. Motions of the scapula are described for a walking animal.

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