Researchers have discovered that 1 in 13 people have flexible feet similar to those of apes.
Jeremy DeSilva and a colleague from Boston University used a special mechanized carpet to analyze components of the feet of 398 visitors to the Boston Museum of Science. Other ape species like chimpanzees spend a lot of time in trees, a lifestyle for which their flexible feet are essential to climb and grip branches. The exact process through which humans ended up with much more rigid feet however is not fully understood.
As many as 1 in 13 of those tested were found to still possess the tendancy for the middle of the foot to bend more easily, a trait known as the 'midtarsal break' in apes. "The best way to see this is if you're walking on the beach and leaving footprints, the middle portion of your footprint would have a big ridge that might show your foot is actually folding in that area," said Dr DeSilva.
"Scientists have discovered that about one in thirteen people have flexible ape-like feet."
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Source: BBC News
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