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The 'shape&roll' prosthetic foot: I. Design and development of appropriate technology for low-income countries.


The Shape&Roll Prosthetic Foot (patent pending) is an artificial foot designed for use in low-income countries, and may also be useful in industrialised nations. Its design is based on the theory that the roll-over shape of a prosthetic foot should mimic that of the non-disabled physiological foot-ankle complex during walking. This article presents the S&R foot including the unique features incorporated into its design. The results of mechanical tests indicate that the roll-over shape of the foot closely mimics the roll-over shape of the non-disabled ankle-foot complex and an expensive 'high-performance' prosthetic foot. The fatigue testing process for the S&R foot is also described. The foot has been shown to be durable according to the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) standards, with more than five samples tested to date. The Shape&Roll Foot is low in cost, simple to fabricate, light in weight, low in profile, and is highly functional for walking in respect of roll-over characteristics.