This study investigated the results of a preference test based on wearers’ responses to the comfort of shoes with varied distributions of masses in pairwise comparisons. The pairwise comparisons were conducted by 50 male participants and 50 female participants to find the pair of shoes they liked most from among five pairs of tested shoes (shoes A–shoes E), according to their perceived shoe comfort. Given varied distribution of added masses of total 200 g to the front end and/or the rear end of each tested shoe, the centre of gravity (COG) of each tested shoe shifted to a different position. The first test began with a comparison between pair A and pair E, since the two pairs were of the largest difference in terms of the position of COG. As the pairwise comparisons continued on, the difference in the position of COG between two pairs of tested shoes became smaller and smaller. After completing the four comparisons, the most preferred pair was chosen. Most participants preferred rear-weighted shoes, probably because they felt that a shoe was lighter when the position of COG was closer to the rear end of the shoe or because they were affected by the characteristics of the shoes they usually wore. In general, the preference test is a fast, highly reliable approach to shoe comfort assessment, especially when systematic changes are made to the characteristics of shoes, such as shoe weight, sole thickness, and sole hardness.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Human Factors and Ergonomics
- Biomedical Engineering
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
- Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation