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Sex-related differences in foot shape of adult Caucasians - a follow-up study focusing on long and short feet

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The study's purpose was to substantiate findings on sex-related differences in foot morphology focusing on fringe sizes. Altogether, 287 Caucasian adults with long or short feet were scanned. Data were analysed together with data from 847 subjects from a previous study with comparable inclusion criteria and anthropometric data by: (1)comparing absolute measures within 237-277 mm foot length (FL); (2) comparing averaged measures across sizes in % of foot length for 203-323mm FL; (3) reclassifying the additional subjects into a previously defined foot type classification. Male feet were wider and higher for the same FL. Averaged across sizes, no relevant differences between sexes were found for widths and heights. Slender or flat-pointed foot types were more common in longer feet, shorter feet tended to be bigger. Definitions for 'long' and 'short' are sex-related with an offset of three shoe sizes (EU). Results of this follow-up study on long and short feet can substantiate previous findings mainly described for the most common sizes. Statement of Relevance: Improper footwear can cause pain and injury and proper fit is a major criterion for shoe buyers. Knowledge about sex-related differences in foot shape is important for shoe design. This study supplements the field of knowledge for very small and large feet.
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Keywords: anthropometry; cluster analysis; foot dimensions; footwear; sex-related differences

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Medical Clinic, Department of Sports Medicine, University of Tuebingen, Germany 2: Medical Park Bad Wiessee St Hubertus, Germany,Department of Orthopedics and Rehabilitation, Technical University Munich, Germany

Publication date: March 1, 2011

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