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Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 1990 Apr;71(5):304-9.

Kinematics of high-heeled gait.

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Department of Biomechanics, New York College of Osteopathic Medicine, Old Westbury.


High-heeled shoes cause postural changes, a loss in foot function, and increased shock loadings during gait, which must be compensated by accommodations in the kinematics of body segments proximal to the feet. The hypothesis tested in this study was that there are differences in the three-dimensional kinematics of the tibia, knee, hip, pelvis, trunk, and upper trunk between low-heeled and high-heeled gait. Gait analysis of 14 subjects showed that during high-heeled gait subjects walked more slowly (p less than .001), had shorter stride lengths (p less than .001), and had higher stance time percentages (p less than .05). Kinematically, high-heeled gait compared to low-heeled gait, was characterized by significantly increased knee flexion at heelstrike (5.4 degrees vs 2.1 degrees, p less than .05) and during stance phase (22.6 degrees vs 19.2 degrees, p less than .05). During swing phase, high-heeled gait, compared to low-heeled gait, resulted in significantly lower knee flexion (66.1 degrees vs 72.1 degrees, p less than .05) and hip flexion (33.5 degrees vs 34.8 degrees, p less than .05). The range of motion of the pelvis in the sagittal plane was slightly lower in high-heeled gait than in low-heeled gait (7.0 degrees vs 7.9 degrees, p less than .05). No significant differences between low-heeled and high-heeled gait were found in the motions of the pelvis and trunk in the frontal and transverse planes. Statistical tests of intrasubject variability of angles of gait showed that five repeated trials were adequate for analysis of the tibia and knee in all planes of motion and for the hip in frontal and transverse planes.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS).

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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