Artificial neural networks for predicting dorsal pressures on the foot surface while walking

Autores UPV


In this work, artificial neural networks (ANNs) are proposed to predict the dorsal pressure over the foot surface exerted by the shoe upper while walking. A model that is based on the multilayer perceptron (MLP) is used since it can provide a single equation to model the exerted pressure for all the materials used as shoe uppers. Five different models are produced, one model for each one of the four subjects under study and an overall model for the four subjects. The inputs to the neural model include the characteristics of the material and the positions during a whole step of 14 pressure sensors placed on the foot surface. The goal is to find models with good generalization capabilities, (i.e.; models that work appropriately not only for the cases used to train the model but also for new cases) in order to have a useful predictor in routine practice. New cases may involve either new materials for the same subject or even new subjects and new materials. To accomplish this goal, two thirds of the patterns are trained to obtain the model (training data set) and the remaining third is kept for validation purposes. The achieved accuracy was very satisfactory since correlation coefficients between the predicted output and the actual pressure in the validation data were higher than 0.95 for those models developed for individual subjects. For the much more challenging problem of an overall prediction for all the subjects, the correlation coefficient was close to 0.9 in the validation data set (i.e.; with data not previously seen by the model). © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.