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Prosthet Orthot Int. 2013 Apr;37(2):145-51. doi: 10.1177/0309364612454159. Epub 2012 Aug 20.

Influence of modified solid ankle-foot orthosis to be used with and without shoe on dynamic balance and gait characteristic in asymptomatic people.

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Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Faculty of Rehabilitation Sciences, Tehran, Iran.



Ankle-foot orthoses are usually used in combination with footwear. Shoe design can have a significant effect on kinematics of the lower limb joints and line of action of the ground reaction force during walking. But, ankle-foot orthosis-footwear combination is not appropriate for indoor barefoot walking in some Asian cultures. In this study, we have modified a solid ankle-foot orthosis in order to set it in the same position as a solid ankle-foot orthosis-footwear combination.


To investigate the effect of a modified solid ankle-foot orthosis; a solid ankle-foot orthosis which can be locked in different positions on gait and balance performance in comparison with a conventional solid ankle-foot orthosis, a common solid ankle-foot orthosis-shoe combination in asymptomatic adults.


Cross sectional.


Two standard solid ankle-foot orthoses were manufactured with the ankle joint in neutral position. Then, one of these solid ankle-foot orthoses was modified in order to allow locking in a different alignment. Walk across, limit of stability, and sit-to-stand tests of the balance master system were performed while participants wore the modified solid ankle-foot orthosis aligned in 5°-7° anterior inclination without a shoe and a conventional solid ankle-foot orthosis-shoe combination.


There was no significant change in walking speed, step length, and step width with the conventional and modified solid ankle-foot orthoses. In addition, movement velocity and maximum excursion of the center of gravity during the limit of stability test were not different, although the maximal forward excursion of the center of gravity was longer when wearing the modified solid ankle-foot orthosis compared to the conventional solid ankle-foot orthosis-shoe combination (P = 0.000). Sway velocity of the center of gravity did not change during the sit-to-stand test.


The results demonstrated that the modified solid ankle-foot orthosis had the same effects as the conventional solid ankle-foot orthosis-shoe combination on the gait and balance performance of asymptomatic adults. Clinical relevance The findings of the present study can be used as the basis for further investigations on the efficacy of the modified solid ankle-foot orthoses in different neuromuscular populations in order to help people who do not wear shoes at home, as is the custom in some Asian cultures.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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