The effects of low arched feet on foot rotation during gait in children with down syndrome

M. Galli, V. Cimolin, C. Rigoldi, M. Pau, P. Costici, G. Albertini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: In children with Down syndrome (DS) hypotonia and ligament laxity are characteristic features which cause a number of orthopaedic issues, such as flat foot. The aim of this study was to determine if children with flat foot are characterised by an accentuated external foot rotation during walking. Method: Fifty-five children with DS and 15 typically developing children recruited as control group were assessed using three-dimensional gait analysis, using an optoelectronic system, force platforms and video recording. Parameters related to foot rotation were identified and calculated and the participants' foot morphology was assessed using the arch index. Results: Data obtained in this study showed that while DS children without flat foot displayed the foot position on the transverse plane globally close to controls during the whole gait cycle, the DS children with flat foot were characterised by higher extra-rotation of the foot in comparison with those without flat foot and controls. Conclusions: Our results suggest that the presence of flatfoot lead the children with DS to extra-rotate their feet more than the children without flat foot. From a clinical point of view, these results could enhance the rehabilitative programmes in DS.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)758-764
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Intellectual Disability Research
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • Down syndrome
  • Genetics
  • Intellectual disability
  • Methodology in research

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Rehabilitation
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Medicine(all)


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