To investigate the effect of a 13-wk exercise program, based on “movement quality” and “multigames” work, on plantar pressure during walking in children with overweight/obesity (OW/OB).
Seventy children (10.8 ± 1.2 yr, 58.5% girls) with OW/OB, as defined by the World Obesity Federation, were assigned to either a 13-wk exercise program (intervention group [EG]; n
= 39), or to a usual lifestyle control group (CG) (n
= 31). Children underwent assessments of basic anthropometry (weight and height) and plantar pressure during walking before and after the intervention period, recording plantar surface area (cm2
), maximum force (N), and force–time integrals (N·s−1
After the 13-wk intervention period, the EG participants showed no significant change in total plantar surface area, while the CG participants experienced an increase in this variable (small effect size, −2.5 SD; P
= 0.015). Compared with the GC participants, the EG participants showed a greater increase in the maximum force supported beneath the forefoot during walking at the end of the intervention period (small effect size, 0.33 SD; P
= 0.012), specifically under the lateral and medial forefoot (both P
< 0.05). Force–time changed similarly in both groups by the end of the intervention period (all regions P
These results suggest the exercise program led to positive structural and functional changes in plantar pressure during walking. The increase in maximum force supported by the forefoot in the EG children might indicate a change toward a more normal foot rollover pattern and a more adult gait.