Review Article| Volume 37, ISSUE 3, P581-618, December 2021

Download started.


Mechanical Principles of the Equine Foot


      To read this article in full you will need to make a payment

      Purchase one-time access:

      Academic & Personal: 24 hour online accessCorporate R&D Professionals: 24 hour online access
      One-time access price info
      • For academic or personal research use, select 'Academic and Personal'
      • For corporate R&D use, select 'Corporate R&D Professionals'

      Subscribers receive full online access to your subscription and archive of back issues up to and including 2002.

      Content published before 2002 is available via pay-per-view purchase only.


      Subscribe to Veterinary Clinics: Equine Practice
      Already a print subscriber? Claim online access
      Already an online subscriber? Sign in
      Institutional Access: Sign in to ScienceDirect


      1. Balch O, White K and Butler D. How lameness is associated with selected aspects of hoof imbalance. Proc 39 Annual convention American association of equine practitioners 1993.

        • Anderson T.M.
        • McIlwraith C.W.
        • Douay P.
        The role of conformation in musculoskeletal problems in the racing thoroughbred.
        Equine Vet J. 2004; 36: 571-575
        • Eliashar E.
        • McGuigan M.
        • Wilson A.
        Relationship of foot conformation and force applied to the navicular bone of sound horses at the trot.
        Equine Vet J. 2004; 36: 431-435
        • Kane A.
        • Stover S.
        • Gardner I.
        • et al.
        Hoof size, shape, and balance as possible risk factors for catastrophic musculoskeletal injury of thoroughbred racehorses.
        Am J Vet Res. 1998; 59: 1545-1552
        • Viitanen M.J.
        • Wilson A.M.
        • McGuigan H.P.
        • et al.
        Effect of hoof balance on the intra-articular pressure in the distal interpha- langeal joint in vitro.
        Equine Vet J. 2003; 35: 184-189
        • Kate Holroyd a.
        • Jonathon J.
        • Dixon b.
        • et al.
        Variation in foot conformation in lame horses with different foot lesions.
        Vet J. 2013 Mar; 195: 361-365
      2. Value of quality foot radiographs and their impact on practical Farriery Randy B. Eggleston, AAEP Procedings 2012 Vol. 58

      3. Frederik E. Pauwels, Chris W. Rogers, Heather Wharton, Radiographic measurements of hoof balance are significantly influenced by a horse’s stance, Vet Radiol Ultrasound 2017;58(1). p. 10-17

        • Balch O.
        • Butler D.
        • Collie M.
        Balancing the normal foot: hoof preparation, shoe fit and shoe modification in the performance horse.
        Equine Uet Educ. 1997; 9: 143-154
        • Wilson A.M.
        • McGuigan M.P.
        • Fouracre L.
        • et al.
        The force and contact stress on the navicular bone during trot locomotion in sound horses and horses with Navicular disease.
        Equine Vet J. 2001; 33: 159-165
        • Clayton H.
        The effect of an acute hoof wall angulation on the stride kinematics of trotting horses.
        Equine Vet J Suppl. 1990; 9: 86-90
        • Oosterlinck M.
        • Pille F.
        • Huppes T.
        • Gasthuyes F.
        Back W Comparison of pressure plate and force plate gait kinetics in sound Warmbloods at walk and trot.
        Vet J. 2010 Dec; 186: 347-351
        • Chateau H.
        • Degueurce C Jerbik H.
        • Crevier-denoix N.
        • et al.
        Three-dimensional kinematics of the equine interphalangeal joints: articular impact of asymmetric bearing.
        Vet Res. 2002; 33: 371-382
      4. Tekscan, Inc. 307 West First Street South Boston,MA 02127

      5. Werkman Black, Helper Molenstraat 43, 9721 BT Groningen The Netherlands,

        • Meriam J.G.
        The role and importance of farriery in equine veterinary practice.
        Vet Clin North Am. 2003; 19: 273-283
        • Pauwels F.
        • Rogers C.
        • Wharton H.
        • et al.
        Radiographic measurements of hoof balance are significantly influenced by a horse’s stance.
        Vet Radiol Ultrasound. 2017; 58: 10-17
        • Eliashar E.
        An evidence-based assessment of the biomechanical effects of the common shoeing and farriery techniques.
        Vet Clin North Am. 2007; 23: 425-442
        • Redden R.
        Radiographic imaging of the equine foot.
        Vet Clin North Am. 2003; 19: 443-462
        • Bushe T.
        • Turner T.
        • Poulos P.
        • et al.
        The effect of hoof angle on coffin, pastern and fetlock joint angles, in Proceedings.
        Am Assoc Equine Pract. 1988; 33: 729-738
        • Back W.
        • Schamhardt H.C.
        • Hartman W.
        • et al.
        Kinematic differences between the distal portions of the forelimbs and hind limbs of horses at the trot.
        Am J Vet Res. 1995; 56: 1552-1558
        • Redden R.F.
        A technique for performing digital venography in the standing horse.
        Equine Vet Educ. 2001; 3: 172-178
        • Redden R.
        Hoof capsule distortions: Understanding the mechanisms as a basis for rational management.
        Vet Clin North Am. 2003; 19: 443-462
        • Balch O.K.
        The effects of change in hoof angle, mediolateral balance, and toe length on kinetic and temporal parameters of horse walking, trotting and cantering on a high-speed treadmill (ph thesis).
        Washington State University, Pullman (WA)1993: 21-30
        • Dyhre-Poulsen P.
        • Smedegaard H.H.
        • Roed J.
        • et al.
        Equine hoof function investigated by pressure transducers inside the hoof and accelerometers mounted on the first phalanx.
        Equine Vet J. 1994; 26: 362-366
        • Rooney J.R.
        The lame horse: causes, symptoms, and treat- ment.
        Wilshire Book Co, Chatsworth, CA1974: 117-118
      6. Bowker RM. The anatomy of the ungula cartilage and digital cushion. 12th Annual Bluegrass Laminitis Symposium 75-88. 1998.

        • Peel J.
        • Peel M.
        • Davies H.
        The Effect of gallop training on hoof angle in the thoroughbred racehorses.
        Equine Vet Supplementary. 2006; 36: 43