Reliability and normative values of the foot line test: a technique to assess foot posture

Study design: Test-retest reliability.

Objective: To examine the reliability and report normative values of a novel test, the foot line test (FLT), to describe foot morphology.

Background: Numerous foot examinations are performed each day, but most existing examination techniques have considerable limitations regarding reliability and validity.

Methods: One hundred thirty subjects with mean foot size 44 (41-50 European size) participated. Two examiners, blinded to each other’s measurements, measured the right foot of the subjects twice and the left foot once. The position of the most medial aspect of the navicular in the mediolateral direction was projected vertically onto a piece of paper placed under the subject’s foot, and compared to the position of the forefoot and hindfoot to obtain the FLT value.

Results: FLT values ranged from -8 to 14 mm, with a mean (+/-SD) of 3.7 +/- 3.4 mm. The intratester reproducibility reported by SEM was 0.8 mm for tester 1 and 0.9 mm for tester 2, while intertester SEM was 1.4 mm for the right foot and 1.3 mm for the left foot. The intrarater ICC was 0.95 for tester 1 and 0.94 for tester 2, while the interrater ICC was 0.86 (left foot) and 0.83 (right foot). There was no significant association between foot size and FLT values.

Conclusion: The FLT is a reproducible technique to assess foot posture.

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