SEARCH

SEARCH BY CITATION

Keywords:

  • Bipedality;
  • Hominid evolution;
  • Locomotion

Abstract

Metatarsophalangeal joints from African pongids, modern humans, and Australopithecus afarensis are compared to investigate the anatomical and mechanical changes that accompanied the transition to terrestrial bipedality. Features analyzed include the shape and orientation of the metatarsal heads, excursion of the metatarsophalangeal joints, and orientation of the basal articular surface of the proximal phalanges. These features unequivocally segregate quadrupedal pongids and bipedal hominids and demonstrate a clear adaptation to terrestrial bipedality in the Hadar pedal skeleton.