Orthotic design and foot impression procedures to control foot alignment

Kam Lun Leung, J. C.Y. Cheng, A. F.T. Mak

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


The traditional theory on subtalar joint neutral position and intrinsic foot deformities for the evaluation and treatment of foot and ankle disorders has been the basis for foot orthotics for many years. Although clinical evaluations have suggested a relationship between subtalar pronation and a variety of lower limb problems, such as shin splints and anterior knee pain, recent research has raised serious concerns about the reliability and validity of the assessment and intervention methods. Results of recent studies in foot biomechanics suggest that the orthosis design to control foot alignment should stabilise the medial apical bony structure of the arch to control the first ray mobility and transmit load through the lateral support structures of the foot, locking the calcaneocuboid joint and decreasing strain in the plantar aponeurosis. The concept of "posting" according to a measured foot deformity is de-emphasised. Reliable foot impression procedures are required to provide appropriate orthotic design and thus management. A prone lying position manipulated foot impression method using polycaprolactone based low temperature thermoplastic material was introduced. Ten (10) subjects were recruited to participate in the reliability tests, which were conducted by 2 orthotists specialized in foot orthotics. Results showed high intrarater and interrater reliability of the measured forefoot width and the navicular height. The reliability of the forefoot-rearfoot relationship was demonstrated by the small variance of the root mean square calculation. Subsequently orthotic intervention can be done in a more consistent in manner.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)254-262
Number of pages9
JournalProsthetics and Orthotics International
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2004

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Professions (miscellaneous)
  • Rehabilitation


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