Custom formed orthoses in cycling

J Sci Med Sport. 2011 Nov;14(6):529-34. doi: 10.1016/j.jsams.2011.04.002. Epub 2011 May 23.


To assess the effects of currently used prescribed in-shoe custom foot orthoses (CFOs) on a number of biomechanical variables during the power phase of cycling, including: hip adduction, knee abduction and tibial internal rotation. Before and after cross-over study recording subjects' biomechanical variables with and without their CFOs. Twelve competitive cyclists, currently using prescribed in-shoe CFOs, performed two exercise bouts on a stationary trainer, with 3-dimensional data recorded on an 8 camera Vicon Mx system. 2-way ANOVA statistical analysis of Null vs Orthotic condition, and left leg vs right leg. No systematic effects from the CFOs were seen. A trend towards reduced tibial internal rotation range of movement was found (P<0.072). Significant subject-specific effects from the CFOs were seen (P<0.05). Three distinct patterns of knee movement were observed. All subjects had significant left to right leg differences. CFOs do not produce systematic effects on cycling biomechanics. Significant subject-specific biomechanical effects can be produced by CFOs utilizing rearfoot and/or forefoot wedges. An individualised approach to orthotic prescription, and attention to the forefoot-rearfoot relationship, is recommended.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Athletes
  • Athletic Performance / physiology*
  • Bicycling*
  • Biomechanical Phenomena
  • Cross-Over Studies
  • Female
  • Hip / physiology
  • Humans
  • Leg / physiology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Orthotic Devices*
  • Rotation
  • Tibia / physiology