Quantifying foot deformation using finite helical angle

  • Pothrat Claude
  • Goislard de Monsabert Benjamin
  • Vigouroux Laurent
  • Viehweger Elke
  • Berton Eric
  • Rao Guillaume

  • Foot kinematics
  • Repeatability
  • Sport movements


Foot intrinsic motion originates from the combination of numerous joint motions giving this segment a high adaptive ability. Existing foot kinematic models are mostly focused on analyzing small scale foot bone to bone motions which require both complex experimental methodology and complex interpretative work to assess the global foot functionality. This study proposes a method to assess the total foot deformation by calculating a helical angle from the relative motions of the rearfoot and the forefoot. This method required a limited number of retro-reflective markers placed on the foot and was tested for five different movements (walking, forefoot impact running, heel impact running, 90 degrees cutting, and 180 degrees U-turn) and 12 participants. Overtime intraclass correlation coefficients were calculated to quantify the helical angle pattern repeatability for each movement. Our results indicated that the method was suitable to identify the different motions as different amplitudes of helical angle were observed according to the flexibility required in each movement. Moreover, the results showed that the repeatability could be used to identify the mastering of each motion as this repeatability was high for well mastered movements. Together with existing methods, this new protocol could be applied to fully assess foot function in sport or clinical contexts. (C) 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.