instrumented gait analysis, force partitioning, center of pressure, foot energetics, footprint mask, anatomical masking, geometric masking, butterfly or Pedotti diagram


The role of the foot in gait is not well understood, in part due to challenges in capturing and utilizing segmental ground reaction forces. The purposes of this study were to 1) develop methodology to integrate plantar pressure/shear stresses with a multi-segment foot model, and 2) generate and display key normative data from this combined system. Twenty-six young healthy adults walked barefoot (1.3 m/s) across a pressure/shear sensor with markers matching a published 4-segment kinetic foot model. A novel anatomical/geometric masking method was developed that successfully separated regions aligned with model segmentation. This template-based method can be automated and customized for other contexts. Directional shear force plots were created to summarize complex plantar shear distributions and showed opposing shear forces between and within segments. Segment centers of pressure (CoPs) were primarily stationary within each segment, suggesting that forward progression arises primarily from redistributing weight across fixed contact points. Inverse dynamics based normative foot joint moments and power were presented in the context of these CoPs to aid interpretation of tissue stresses. The presented tools and normative data may be useful for future investigation of gait energetics and efficiency, balance, and motor control.

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

Publication Date





Life Sciences


Exercise Sciences

University Standing at Time of Publication

Associate Professor