Eurographics Symposium on Computer Animation

| 2022

UnderPressure: Deep Learning for Foot Contact Detection, Ground Reaction Force Estimation and Footskate Cleanup

Lucas Mourot, Ludovic Hoyet, François Le Clerc, Pierre Hellier
Inria, Univ Rennes, CNRS, IRISA


Computer games, ground reaction force


Human motion synthesis and editing are essential to many applications like film post-production. However, they often introduce artefacts in motions, which can be detrimental to the perceived realism. In particular, footskating is a frequent and disturbing artefact requiring foot contacts knowledge to be cleaned up. Current approaches to obtain foot contact labels rely either on unreliable threshold-based heuristics or on tedious manual annotation. In this article, we address foot contact label detection from motion with a deep learning. To this end, we first publicly release UnderPressure, a novel motion capture database labelled with pressure insoles data serving as reliable knowledge of foot contact with the ground. Then, we design and train a deep neural network to estimate ground reaction forces exerted on the feet from motion data and then derive accurate foot contact labels. The evaluation of our model shows that we significantly outperform heuristic approaches based on height and velocity thresholds and that our approach is much more robust on motion sequences suffering from perturbations like noise or footskate. We further propose a fully automatic workflow for footskate cleanup: foot contact labels are first derived from estimated ground reaction forces. Then, footskate is removed by solving foot constraints through an optimisation-based inverse kinematics (IK) approach that ensures consistency with the estimated ground reaction forces. Beyond footskate cleanup, both the database and the method we propose could help to improve many approaches based on foot contact labels or ground reaction forces, including inverse dynamics problems like motion reconstruction and learning of deep motion models in motion synthesis or character animation.

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