No, actually, I don't completely get it, but I'm starting to. I had this astonishing breakthrough yesterday while cruising the local necropolis. For those in the know, this picture clearly illustrates what I discovered about this foot that makes it so much more useful to me in my particular walk-everywhere-over-every-kind-of-terrain lifestyle than my last perfectly satisfactory (and possibly slightly holy) foot (the Endolite Dynamic Response foot). For those not in the know, or for those who may be shopping for a new foot themselves, I shall explain.
First, let me pull back to show you the whole picture. (Click to enlarge.)
Can you see what's happening here? If you have ordinary, functional, organic feet, what you can see here is something you probably take for granted: side to side flexion, allowing the entire sole of my foot (and all the traction of the bottom of my shoe) to remain in contact with the ground. This is very important for someone who goes up and down as many hills as I do, and over as many diverse textures. The texture shown here, for example, is that of age-worn slippery shoe sole on essentially small river rocks, also worn smooth.
This was the angle of descent, incidentally. (Click to enlarge.)
Yes, I was walking down that not-exactly-path, more like a rainwater run-off, to get to the road below. Not a big deal for someone with all their original body parts in good working order, but not the easiest or safest thing for someone with a stiff-from-the-ankle-down doll foot.
My previous foot flexed brilliantly from front to back, which gave me a lot of spring in my step -- and the amount of spring was adjustable via a little key through the back of the heel. This one doesn't do that at all, not as far as I can discern at my large size/weight and small shoe size. The loss of this spring is not important to my long term goals, as I am not a runner but a walker, hiker, and climber. It confused me, though, because I've been using that spring to walk and strategically employing it to climb and even climb downward for over four years. At the same time, the side to side flexion created by a split metatarsal spring in the new foot (there's your cloven hoof, Ron; it's there, but hidden under all that pink plastic) plus some really superior new alignment in the whole leg to which I was not yet accustomed were together making me feel unstable when I stepped on the foot in ordinary forward walking. I didn't realize the foot was actually adapting safely to the angle of impact. I thought I was rolling off it, that it was too narrow. Not true, however. While I've lost some forward spring, I've gained safety in downhill walking and for all surfaces that are not evenly flat.
Neat, huh? I can't wait to learn what other tricks little Barbie can do.
Okay, back to the tour -- tomorrow.