Video Case: Another 2 minutes of chatter inside Dr. Allen's brain.
Great case, idiopathic toe walker since childhood, WITH CORRECTION.
What is amazing here is how "soft wired" this pattern is in this case. Usually toe walking is quite hardwired ("search" our blog for Primitive Toe walking) and very difficult to change if one is even extremely lucky. This case was very malleable and immediately changed by conscious effort, with zero queuing. In this case, the mere verbal queue "scuff some imaginary mud off your heels" drove him into ankle dorsiflexion and ankle rocker patterning.
Cases are sometimes about finding out if the client has the working parts, biomechanically, and the neurologic awareness and wiring to even implement a different pattern. This is a classic case of, "we do what we do"; we can get used to, and accustomed to, anything especially if there is no consequence. We can learn any habit, right or wrong. That is the beauty of the nervous system; it will learn anything you teach it, right or wrong. It is also why we worry so much. Why worry you ask ? Because everyday on this earth, some trainer, doctor, therapist, coach etc is telling their client to change they way they are doing something, whether that is "take a longer stride" or"swing the right arm more" or, "turn the left foot in more". The brain will adapt. The question is, are you fixing your client, or just asking them to compensate around their compensation, rather than fixing the underlying rooted problem ? This requires "facts, knowledge, wisdom and then insight", in that order (thanks #neiltyson).
Great case, a "Soft wired" toe walker, with immediate change in seconds. He had all the mechanical parts and neurologic wiring and ability to adapt to another locomotor pattern. Sometimes all we need to know is how to do something the right way, if you have the working parts and neurology to do so.