Plantar pressure distribution and perceived comfort with elevated heel heights during standing and walking

Yee Nee Lam, Kit Lun Yick, Sun Pui Ng, Dad Ming Leung, Ka Lai Yeung

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

Abstract

This paper provides technical know-how for footwear manufacturers to develop high-heeled ladies shoes with improved comfort by measuring the plantar pressure distribution and perceived comfort of 5 female subjects (mean (SD): age 20.4 (4.3) years old, weight 52.0 (3.7) kg and height 161.2 (5.5) cm) during standing and walking with high-heeled shoes. To measure the plantar pressure, the subjects were randomly assigned three pairs of high-heeled shoes (heel heights: 1.8, 5 and 8 cm) with insole sensors inserted. The measured plantar pressure is divided into 8 regions for analysis. The visual analogue scale (VAS) was used to evaluate the footwear comfort of each experimental condition. The result indicates that during standing, exceptionally high pressure (>95 kPa) is consistently recorded in the heel regions (medial and lateral heels), while the mid-foot regions have the lowest plantar pressure. During walking, when the heel height is increased to 8 cm, the pressure in the heel and lateral regions (3rd-5th metatarsal heads (MTHs), lateral mid-foot) decrease and is redistributed to the medial forefoot (1st- 2nd MTHs). The perceived comfort of footwear is found to be determined by the mean peak pressure and contact area during standing and walking with correlation coefficients up to 0.972(P<0.05). Extra mid-foot support is suggested in high-heeled shoe design to enhance the interfacial contact between the insole surface and foot arch, and overall comfort of the footwear.

Original languageEnglish
Pages722-728
Number of pages7
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Event7th Textile Bioengineering and Informatics Symposium, TBIS 2014, in conjunction with the 5th Asian Protective Clothing Conference, APCC 2014 - Hong Kong, China
Duration: 6 Aug 20148 Aug 2014

Conference

Conference7th Textile Bioengineering and Informatics Symposium, TBIS 2014, in conjunction with the 5th Asian Protective Clothing Conference, APCC 2014
Country/TerritoryChina
CityHong Kong
Period6/08/148/08/14

Keywords

  • Footwear
  • Gait
  • Heel heights
  • Plantar pressure

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