Foot kinematics during walking measured using bone and surface mounted markers

J Biomech. 2007;40(15):3412-23. doi: 10.1016/j.jbiomech.2007.05.019. Epub 2007 Jul 16.


The aim was to compare kinematic data from an experimental foot model comprising four segments ((i) heel, (ii) navicular/cuboid (iii) medial forefoot, (iv) lateral forefoot), to the kinematics of the individual bones comprising each segment. The foot model was represented using two different marker attachment protocols: (a) markers attached directly to the skin; (b) markers attached to rigid plates mounted on the skin. Bone data were collected for the tibia, talus, calcaneus, navicular, cuboid, medial cuneiform and first and fifth metatarsals (n=6). Based on the mean differences between the three data sets during stance, the differences between any two of the three kinematic protocols (i.e. bone vs skin, bone vs plate, skin vs plate) were >3 degrees in only 35% of the data and >5 degrees in only 3.5% of the data. However, the maximum difference between any two of the three protocols during stance was >3 degrees in 100% of the data, >5 degrees in 73% of the data and >8 degrees in 23% of the data. Differences were greatest for motion of the combined navicular/cuboid relative to the calcaneus and the medial forefoot segment relative to the navicular/cuboid. The differences between the data from the skin and plate protocols were consistently smaller than differences between either protocol and the kinematic data for each bone comprising the segment. The pattern of differences between skin and plate protocols and the actual bone motion showed no systematic pattern. It is unlikely that one rigid body foot model and marker attachment approach is always preferable over another.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Biomechanical Phenomena
  • Bones of Lower Extremity / physiology*
  • Foot / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Skin*
  • Walking / physiology*