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A Comparison of Two Multisegment Foot Models in High-and Low-Arched Athletes

Douglas W. Powell Human Performance Laboratory, School of Education, Health, and Human Performance, Fairmont State University, Fairmont, WV. Dr. Powell is now with the Department of Physical Therapy, College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, Campbell University, Buies Creek, NC.

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 PhD, CSCS
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D.S. Blaise Williams Human Movement Research Laboratory, Department of Physical Therapy, East Carolina University, Greenville, NC. Dr. Williams is now with Research Division, Commonwealth Sports Medicine, Glen Allen, VA.

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Robert J. Butler Division of Doctor of Physical Therapy, Duke University, Durham, NC.

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Background:

Malalignment and dysfunction of the foot have been associated with an increased propensity for overuse and traumatic injury in athletes. Several multisegment foot models have been developed to investigate motions in the foot. However, it remains unknown whether the kinematics measured by different multisegment foot models are equivocal. The purpose of the present study is to examine the efficacy of two multisegment foot models in tracking aberrant foot function.

Methods:

Ten high-arched and ten low-arched female athletes walked and ran while ground reaction forces and three-dimensional kinematics were tracked using the Leardini and Oxford multisegment foot models. Ground reaction forces and joint angles were calculated with Visual 3D (C-Motion Inc, Germantown, MD). Repeated-measures analyses of variance were used to analyze peak eversion, time to peak eversion, and eversion excursions.

Results:

The Leardini model was more sensitive to differences in peak eversion angles than the Oxford model. However, the Oxford model detected differences in eversion excursion values that the Leardini model did not detect.

Conclusions:

Although both models found differences in frontal plane motion between high- and low-arched athletes, the Leardini multisegment foot model is suggested to be more appropriate as it directly tracks frontal plane midfoot motion during dynamic motion. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 103(2): 99–105, 2013)

Corresponding author: Douglas W. Powell, PhD, CSCS, Assistant Professor, Department of Physical Therapy, College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, Campbell University, PO Box 1090, Buies Creek, NC 27506. (E-mail: dpowell@campbell.edu or dwp0817@gmail.com)