The ankle joint, including the talocrural and subtalar joints, plays an important role in human locomotion. Sex differences in walking patterns among young and old adults have been studied; however, little information exists on sex-based variations in talocrural and subtalar joint kinematics during walking. Thus, the purpose of this study was to investigate sex-based differences in the talocrural and subtalar joint kinematics during walking. We obtained lateral fluoroscopic images from 10 male and 7 female healthy volunteers during stance phase, and determined the three-dimensional bone orientations using 3D-2D model-image registration techniques to compare sex-specific differences. The orientation of the tibia, talus, and calcaneus were comparable in the static reference position. Sex-based differences in the range of motion were observed in talocrural dorsi/plantar flexion, subtalar eversion/inversion and subtalar external/internal rotation while walking. The ranges of motion in talocrural dorsi/plantar flexion (male, 13 ± 4°; female, 17 ± 3°), subtalar eversion/inversion (male, 8 ± 3°; female, 11 ± 3°) and subtalar external/internal rotation (male, 5 ± 2°; female, 7 ± 2°) were significantly larger in females than in males. Differences in rearfoot kinematics between males and females may reflect anatomic, physiologic and locomotor differences. Greater bone rotations in the female hindfoot may predispose women to different pathologies, or merit different treatments, than men based upon subtalar and talocrural kinematics during gait.
ASJC Scopus subject areas