Podiatric biomechanics. An historical appraisal and discussion of the Root model as a clinical system of approach in the present context of theoretical uncertainty

Clin Podiatr Med Surg. 2001 Oct;18(4):555-684; discussion 685-90, v.


This article attempts to review comprehensively the development of the established Root Model and to appraise dispassionately its place and role in today's field of clinical podiatric biomechanics. It also discusses several important emergent models (the models of Dananberg, Kirby, Fuller, McPoil, Hunt, and Demp) that have gained increasing popularity among the podiatric and nonpodiatric clinical communities over the last 10 to 15 years. All of these models (the Root model and emergent models) have been analyses against the background of the Kuhnian concepts of "paradigm" and "preparadigm." Discussion has been provided as to whether the domain of podiatric biomechanics presently resides in a paradigm driven normal science phase, or whether it is still functioning within a preparadigm phase with its defining hallmark of community nonconsensus. Suggestions are then made as to possible ways for research to progress within the present ferment of debate and theoretic uncertainty.

Publication types

  • Biography
  • Historical Article
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Biomechanical Phenomena*
  • Foot / physiology*
  • Foot / physiopathology
  • Foot Diseases / history
  • Foot Diseases / physiopathology*
  • Foot Diseases / therapy
  • History, 20th Century
  • Humans
  • Models, Biological*
  • Orthotic Devices / history
  • Podiatry / history*
  • Reference Values
  • Subtalar Joint / physiology
  • Subtalar Joint / physiopathology

Personal name as subject

  • M L Root