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The impact of footwear choice on foot biomechanics in young adults with considerations to the potential risk of developing foot pathology

BRANTHWAITE, Helen (2015) The impact of footwear choice on foot biomechanics in young adults with considerations to the potential risk of developing foot pathology. Doctoral thesis, Staffordshire University.

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BRANTHWAITE H - PhD by PW - final e-thesis (Helen_Branthwaite_Complete_Phd).pdf

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Abstract or description

Foot pain and pathology can be disabling leading to more complex orthopaedic
complaints over time. Footwear is often attributed as a significant factor in the
development and persistence of foot pain, yet little is known about the impact everyday
footwear choice has on the development of these pathologies and foot biomechanics.
The aim of this collection of work is to assess the impact footwear choice has on foot
biomechanics.
A mixed methods approach has been employed across various publications to
investigate the following; choices made when purchasing footwear, the impact footwear
structure and styling has on foot mechanics and comfort and the effect of unstable
shoes on muscle function. The publications employed literature reviews, qualitative
questionnaires, repeated measures and quasi-experimental designs to address the
research questions.
There is a paucity of research regarding the effects that everyday footwear have on the
feet of healthy individuals. A flat ballet pump was found to be the primary shoe of
choice for young females with the colour of trainers being selected by sport science
students. Altered physical characteristics of the shoe caused elevated dorsal and
plantar foot pressure, impaired comfort and altered function. Fashionable exercise
shoes were shown to demonstrate a varied effect on muscle activity.
The availability of suitably fashionable and functional footwear appears to be severely
limited leading to consumers purchasing inappropriate and ill-fitting footwear that may
contribute to foot pathology. An extensive review of design, properties and
manufacture with specific consideration to pathology in the footwear industry is
recommended to improve footwear choice.
The publications presented add new knowledge when evaluating consumer choice of
footwear and the potentially adverse impact popular female fashion shoes have on foot
biomechanics. The results also contribute to a wider understanding of the impact
everyday footwear has on foot pathology and help in the application of footwear related
treatment and rehabilitation plans.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Subjects: C900 Others in Biological Sciences
Depositing User: Kim MCGAW
Date Deposited: 11 Feb 2016 14:28
Last Modified: 19 Apr 2017 12:27
URI: http://eprints.staffs.ac.uk/id/eprint/2256

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