This study designs a wearable sensing system for locomotion mode recognition using lower-limb skin surface curvature deformation caused by the morphological changes of musculotendinous complexes and soft tissues. Flexible bending sensors are embedded into stretch pants, enabling curvature deformations of specific skin segments above lower-limb muscle groups to be captured in a noncontact manner. To evaluate the performance of this system, we conducted experiments on eight able-bodied subjects completing seven common locomotive activities, including walking, running, ramp ascending/descending, stair ascending/descending, and standing. The system measured seven channels of deformation signals from two cross-sections on the shank and the thigh. The collected signals were distinguishable across different locomotion modes and exhibited consistency when monitoring steps. Using selected time-domain features and a linear discriminant analysis (LDA) classifier enabled the proposed system to continuously recognize locomotion modes with an average accuracy of 96.5%. Furthermore, the system maintains recognition performance with 95.7% accuracy even after removing and reapplying the sensors. Finally, we conducted comparison experiments to analyze how window length, feature selection, and the number of channels affect recognition performance, providing insights for optimization. We believe that this novel signal platform holds great potential as a valuable supplementary tool in wearable human motion detection, enriching the information diversity for motion analysis, and enabling new possibilities for further advancements and applications in fields including biomedical engineering, textiles, and computer graphics.

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