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J Appl Biomech. 2017 Dec 1;33(6):460-463. doi: 10.1123/jab.2016-0309. Epub 2017 Oct 30.

Effect of Shoes on Stiffness and Energy Efficiency of Ankle-Foot Orthosis: Bench Testing Analysis.

Author information

1
1 Hokkaido University of Science.
2
2 Orthocare Innovations.
3
3 University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center.
4
4 Becker Orthopedic.
5
5 University of Utah.
6
6 Stanford University.

Abstract

Understanding the mechanical properties of ankle-foot orthoses (AFOs) is important to maximize their benefit for those with movement disorders during gait. Though mechanical properties such as stiffness and/or energy efficiency of AFOs have been extensively studied, it remains unknown how and to what extent shoes influence their properties. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of shoes on stiffness and energy efficiency of an AFO using a custom mechanical testing device. Stiffness and energy efficiency of the AFO were measured in the plantar flexion and dorsiflexion range, respectively, under AFO-alone and AFO-Shoe combination conditions. The results of this study demonstrated that the stiffness of the AFO-Shoe combination was significantly decreased compared to the AFO-alone condition, but no significant differences were found in energy efficiency. From the results, we recommend that shoes used with AFOs should be carefully selected not only based on their effect on alignment of the lower limb, but also their effects on overall mechanical properties of the AFO-Shoe combination. Further study is needed to clarify the effects of differences in shoe designs on AFO-Shoe combination mechanical properties.

KEYWORDS:

ankle foot orthoses; footwear; gait; moment; orthotics

PMID:
28605225
DOI:
10.1123/jab.2016-0309
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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