The current study aimed to comparatively examine the effects of minimalist, maximalist, and conventional footwear on the loads experienced by the patellofemoral joint during running. Twenty male participants ran over a force platform at 4.0 m×s–1. Lower limb kinematics were collected using an 8-camera motion capture system allowing patellofemoral kinetics to be quantified using a musculoskeletal modeling approach. Differences in patellofemoral kinetic parameters were examined using one-way repeatedmeasures ANOVA. The results showed the peak patellofemoral force and pressure were significantly larger in conventional (4.70 ± 0.91 BW, 13.34 ± 2.43 MPa) and maximalist (4.74 ± 0.88 BW, 13.59 ± 2.63 MPa) compared with minimalist footwear (3.87 ± 1.00 BW, 11.59 ± 2.63 MPa). It was also revealed that patellofemoral force per mile was significantly larger in conventional (246.81 ± 53.21 BW) and maximalist (251.94 ± 59.17 BW) as compared with minimalist (227.77 ± 58.60 BW) footwear. As excessive loading of the patellofemoral joint has been associated with the etiology of patellofemoral pain symptoms, the current investigation indicates that minimalist footwear may be able reduce runners’ susceptibility to patellofemoral disorders.
Jonathan Sinclair and Hannah Shore are with the Centre for Applied Sport and Exercise Sciences, School of Sport and Wellbeing, University of Central Lancashire, Lancashire, UK. Jim Richards and James Selfe are with the Allied Health Research Unit, School of Health Sciences, University of Central Lancashire, Lancashire, UK. James Fau-Goodwin is with the Division of Physiotherapy and Sports Therapy, School of Health Sciences, University of Central Lancashire, Lancashire, UK.