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BRANTHWAITE, Helen (2015)
Languages: English
Types: Doctoral thesis
Subjects: C900
Foot pain and pathology can be disabling leading to more complex orthopaedic\ud complaints over time. Footwear is often attributed as a significant factor in the\ud development and persistence of foot pain, yet little is known about the impact everyday\ud footwear choice has on the development of these pathologies and foot biomechanics.\ud The aim of this collection of work is to assess the impact footwear choice has on foot\ud biomechanics.\ud A mixed methods approach has been employed across various publications to\ud investigate the following; choices made when purchasing footwear, the impact footwear\ud structure and styling has on foot mechanics and comfort and the effect of unstable\ud shoes on muscle function. The publications employed literature reviews, qualitative\ud questionnaires, repeated measures and quasi-experimental designs to address the\ud research questions.\ud There is a paucity of research regarding the effects that everyday footwear have on the\ud feet of healthy individuals. A flat ballet pump was found to be the primary shoe of\ud choice for young females with the colour of trainers being selected by sport science\ud students. Altered physical characteristics of the shoe caused elevated dorsal and\ud plantar foot pressure, impaired comfort and altered function. Fashionable exercise\ud shoes were shown to demonstrate a varied effect on muscle activity.\ud The availability of suitably fashionable and functional footwear appears to be severely\ud limited leading to consumers purchasing inappropriate and ill-fitting footwear that may\ud contribute to foot pathology. An extensive review of design, properties and\ud manufacture with specific consideration to pathology in the footwear industry is\ud recommended to improve footwear choice.\ud The publications presented add new knowledge when evaluating consumer choice of\ud footwear and the potentially adverse impact popular female fashion shoes have on foot\ud biomechanics. The results also contribute to a wider understanding of the impact\ud everyday footwear has on foot pathology and help in the application of footwear related\ud treatment and rehabilitation plans.
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