This photograph shows the profile of a foot inside a clear boot labeled “99.” The foot has three dots on it, and someone has drawn two lines connecting the dots. This photograph is one of many that document Karpovich's research for the United States Army on the center of gravity in footwear.
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Peter V. Karpovich (1896-1975) was born in Russia and trained as a medical doctor at the State Military Academy of Medicine in Petrograd (St. Petersburg), Russia in 1919. Under increasing political and professional turmoil, he fled to Latvia in 1922. In Latvia, Karpovich worked at the Riga YMCA. In 1925, he traveled to the United States for an opportunity to conduct research at Springfield College. While there, he enrolled at the college as a special advanced student and earned a master’s degree in physical education. In 1927, while completing his studies, he became a professor of physiology at the college. In the late 1940s, he met and married his second wife, Josephine Rathbone, an acclaimed scholar of physical education and relaxation. From 1961 to 1969, he served as the director of the physiology research laboratory at Springfield College, where he published several seminal books. Karpovich was a founding member of the American College of Sports Medicine and a consultant to many government, private and educational organizations. He was and remains an internationally recognized pioneer in physical education.