Influence of shoes and heel strike on the loading of the hip joint

J Biomech. 1995 Jul;28(7):817-27. doi: 10.1016/0021-9290(94)00129-r.


The forces and moments acting at the hip joint influence the long-term stability of the fixation of endoprostheses and the course of coxarthrosis. These loads may depend on the kind of footwear and the walking or running style. These factors were investigated in a patient with instrumented hip implants. He wore different sports shoes, normal leather shoes, hiking boots and clogs and walked barefoot with soft, normal and hard heel strikes. The loads were lowest while walking and jogging without shoes. All shoes increased the joint force and the bending moment at the implant slightly but the torsional moment rose by up to 50%. No relation was found between the different type of shoes and the load increase, only shoes with very hard soles were clearly disadvantageous. Soft heels, soles or insoles did not offer advantages. Gait stability seems to play the most important role in increasing the joint loading and should be the criterion for the choice of footwear. Smooth gait patterns with soft heel strikes are the only means to reduce joint loading during slow jogging.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Arthritis / physiopathology
  • Equipment Design
  • Gait
  • Hardness
  • Heel / physiology*
  • Hip Joint / physiology*
  • Hip Prosthesis*
  • Humans
  • Jogging / physiology
  • Male
  • Osteoarthritis, Hip / physiopathology
  • Prosthesis Failure
  • Rotation
  • Running / physiology
  • Shoes* / classification
  • Stress, Mechanical
  • Walking / physiology