To study the impact of compliant terrains on the biomechanics of rapid legged movements, a well-known spring loaded inverted pendulum (SLIP) model is deployed. The model is a three-degrees-of-freedom system (3 DOF), inspired by galloping greyhounds competing in a racing condition. A single support phase of hind-leg stance in a galloping gait is taken into consideration due to its primary function in powering the greyhounds locomotion and higher rate of musculoskeletal injuries. To obtain and solve the nonlinear second-order differential equation of motions, the Lagrangian method and MATLABb R2017b (ode45 solver), which is based on the Runge-Kutta method, has been used, respectively. To get the viscoelastic behavior of compliant terrains, a Clegg hammer test was developed and performed five times on each sample. The effective spring and damping coefficients of each sample were then determined from the hysteresis curves. The results showed that galloping on the synthetic rubber requires more muscle force compared with wet sand. However, according to the Clegg hammer test, wet sand had a higher impact force than synthetic rubber which can be a risk factor for bone fracture, particularly hock fracture, in greyhounds. The results reported in this paper are not only useful for identifying optimum terrain properties and injury thresholds of an athletic track, but also can be used to design control methods and shock impedances for legged robots performing on compliant terrains.

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