Selective motor control (SMC) is an important determinant of functioning in cerebral palsy (CP). Currently its assessment is based on subjective clinical tests with a low sensitivity. Electromyography (EMG) profiles during gait represent muscle coordination and might be used to assess SMC. EMG measurements during gait were processed into a measure of extensor synergy and thigh synergy. This was obtained in two groups of children with CP, and 30 typically developing children. Extensor synergy in CP was higher (0.95) than in healthy children (0.77), thigh synergy was almost equal in both groups. GMFM scores in the first group of 39 children with CP did not correlate to EMG based synergy measures. In a second group of 38 children with CP, a clear relation of clinical SMC score with extensor synergy was found, but only a weak relation with thigh synergy. Although an extensor synergy was validated at group level, our results present no convincing evidence for the use of EMG during gait to assess SMC in individual subjects with CP. Since gait involves both synergistic and selective contractions, the inherent motor control properties of this task will not allow for an assessment of selectivity comparable to the ability to perform isolated movements. Nevertheless, our results support the sensitive nature of EMG to represent an aberrant motor control in CP. © 2011 Elsevier B.V.