The aim of the present study was to investigate the effect of semi-rigid foot orthoses on lower limb joints (ankle, knee, and hip) stiffness during loading response, mid stance, push off, and entire of stance phase in male children with flexible flatfoot while walking.
A semi-experimental study was conducted on 14 male children with flexible flat foot selected from available community. Data were collected under two specific test conditions including walking in shoes and shoes which were embedded with foot orthoses using semi rigid orthoses. Six Vicon cameras with a frequency of 100 Hz were used to quantify gait kinematic and also two force plates were used to record the ground reaction force components. Three-dimensional lower limb stiffness values during walking were calculated.
Foot orthoses reduced ankle joint stiffness during loading response in sagittal plane (p=0.003) and increased it during push off phase in horizontal plane (p=0.001). Also, during the entire stance phase, foot orthoses reduced ankle joint stiffness in sagittal plane (p=0.033) and increased it in horizontal plane (p=0.039). In the knee joint, stiffness values during mid-stance in sagittal plane (p=0.014) decreased after using foot orthoses. Furthermore foot orthoses increased knee joint stiffness values in horizontal plane during mid stance (p=0.000), push off (p=0.001), and stance phases (p=0.001). Hip joint stiffness was increased in frontal plane (p=0.044) during loading response by foot orthoses.
Generally, semi rigid orthoses improved the ankle joint stiffness values in sagittal plane and it increased the ankle and knee joints stiffness values in horizontal plane.
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