Reconstructing Root. An argument for objectivity

Substantial evidence suggests that complete rejection of the Root model may be premature, given the inherent logic in an Aristotelian interpretation of its core philosophy. Although critics have focused on a Platonic interpretation of Root’s criteria for normalcy and surrounding theories, recent theoretic shifts towards a more flexible view of the factors which can combine to produce pathologic conditions suggest that the Root model retains usefulness. Although it has been suggested that Kuhn’s approach may contain a destructive element, one of its propositions–that a phase of normal science is characterized by a common vision of the research required within the paradigm–seems to hold the key to the future success of podiatric biomechanics. The approach of Lakatos seems to provide the required “modicum of self-confidence which enables us to live and practice” to smooth the transition between established and emergent approaches. Although the approaches of Kuhn and Lakatos remain incommensurable, it is certain that Kuhn would agree with one particularly relevant comment by Lakatos, that “blind commitment to a theory is not an intellectual virtue: it is an intellectual crime.”

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