Symptomatic tendons.

Footnotes 7 - Black and Red.png

A symptomatic tendon affects more than the local area it finds itself, it "affects the neuromuscular control on the involved side but not the non-involved side. The muscle–tendon unit on the tendinotic side exhibits a lowered temporal efficiency, which leads to altered CNS control. The altered CNS control is then expressed as an adapted muscle activation pattern in the lower leg". - Yu-Jen Chang and Kornelia Kulig

Top end heel raises. The top end might matter.

Screen Shot 2019-04-19 at 6.34.09 PM.png

Thought experiment . . .
If top end posterior compartment (loosely, the calf complex) strength is lacking, then heel rise may not be optimized to transfer body mass forward sufficiently and effectively.
This lack of forward progression, fails to move the body mass sufficiently forward enough to reduce the external moment arms and optimize the internal moment arms to take maximal advantage of the calf complex (I am talking about moment arms between the grounded 1st MTP joint and ankle mortise & ankle mortise and achilles tendon).
These are rough thoughts today gang, letting you inside our heads and how we juggle multiple parameters when we are struggling to solve a client's problems.

In the lower heel rise photo, The body mass does not progress forward enough over the grounded first MTP joint at the big toe (during gait, the heel doesn’t just rise up, the axis of the ankle joint moves both up and forward).
In this case, the foot may not be fully rigid in a supinated position to benefit from joint closed-packed positions. Thus, the foot may be more pliable and one might suppose that if not adequately supinated, they are inadequately still too much relatively pronated. This might put more load into the tibialis posterior and other soft tissue mechanical loading scenarios that are less optimally suited to do this job. Over time, might this lead to pathology? Likely.
Thus, when running on a weaker posterior mechanism (often found unilaterally) the higher up posterior chains might be overburdened, the tendon loads and loading response of the achilles, tibialis posterior, and long flexors will be most likely altered, likely negatively, the naturally occurring foot locking mechanisms might be less optimal than desired, subtalar and forefoot loading might be premature (ie. sesamoid malpositioning for one, as a simple example), etc etc. Loading a foot(the mid and forefoot) into heel rise that is still somewhat pronated creates a different moment arm around the subtalar joint axis (that moves through the 1st metatarsal), than a foot that is more supinated.

Now, put these ideas into the 2 photos from yesterday where one might be loading the forefoot laterally or more medially, and now make the top end strength more in one of those scenarios. Is it any wonder why so many struggle with posteiror mechanism tendonopathies ? There are so many parameters to consider and examine. And, if not examined in great detail, the key lacking parameter can be missed.
Hence, just forcing calf strength loading is too simple a solution, there is a needle in that haystack that upset the client's apple cart, it is the job of the clinician to find it and remedy it.

Today, looking into the research and finding some interesting things that are spurring some thoughts.

Shawn Allen, one of the gait guys

The Tib Posterior...Revisited...

Posterior tibialis tendinitis is a primary soft tissue tendinopathy of the posterior tibialis that leads to altered foot biomechanics. Although the natural history of posterior tibialis tendon dysfunction is not fully known, it has mostly been agreed that it is a progressive disorder.(1)

148px-Tibialis_posterior.png

The tibialis posterior originates from the proximal posterior tibia and fibula and interosseous membrane; it is deep in the posterior compartment of the leg and changes its line of pull from the vertical to horizontal at the medial malleolus. The musculotendinous junction is in the distal third of the leg and the tendinous portion turns 90 degrees at the medial malleolus. It has a broad insertion into the plantar surface of the midfoot, largely into the navicular tuberosity with branches to the sustentaculum tali, and the remainder inserting into the entire plantar midfoot except for the 5th metatarsal(1-3).

1757-1146-2-24-4.jpg

 The tibialis posterior (TP) is one of the more important extrinsic arch stabilizing muscles. It is a stance phase muscle that fires from the loading response through terminal stance, acts eccentrically to loading response to mid stance to slow pronation and concentrically from mid stance to terminal stance to assist in supination.(4) Its recruitment seems to be increased with slower walking speeds (5).

Since the foot is usually planted when it fires, we must look at its closed chain function (how it functions when the foot/insertion is fixed on the ground), which is predominantly maintenance of the medial longitudinal arch, with minor contributions to the transverse metatarsal and lateral longitudinal arches (6) ; flexion and adduction of the tarsal’s and metatarsals and eccentric slowing of anterior translation of the tibia during ankle rocker. It is also an external rotator of the lower leg and is the prime muscle which decelerates internal rotation of the tibia and pronation. As the origin and insertion are concentrically brought towards each other during early passive heel lift it becomes a powerful plantarflexor and inverter of the rearfoot.  There is also a  component of ankle stabilization via posterior compression of the tarsal’s and adduction of the tibia and fibula.

Alas, there is much more than the typical open chain functions of plantar flexion, adduction and inversion. Perhaps it is some of these other, closed chain functions, that cause the “progressive nature of posterior tibial tendon dysfunction"(7)?

This muscle is easily accessed through the posterior compartment, lying deep in the midline to the gastroc and soleus (8,9). Care should be taken to avoid the sural nerve, often found between the heads of the gastroc and becoming superficial (and palpable) in the midline where it exits from the inferior junction of the 2 heads of the gastroc (10). The posterior tibial artery, vein and nerve lie on top of the tibialis posterior for the upper 2/3 of its route through the calf, becoming superficial (and palpable) in the distal 1/3 of the lower leg (11). I find starting laterally or medially and angling your fingers, instrument or the needle medially or laterally seems to work best. Make sure to count your layers!

 

 

1. Ling SK, Lui TH. Posterior Tibial Tendon Dysfunction: An Overview.  Open Orthop J. 2017 Jul 31;11:714-723. doi: 10.2174/1874325001711010714. eCollection 2017. link to free full text: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5620404/

2. Blake R.L., Anderson K., Ferguson H. Posterior tibial tendinitis. A literature review with case reports. J. Am. Podiatr. Med. Assoc. 1994;84(3):141–149. doi: 10.7547/87507315-84-3-141. [PubMed] [Cross Ref]

3. Supple K.M., Hanft J.R., Murphy B.J., Janecki C.J., Kogler G.F. Posterior tibial tendon dysfunction. Semin. Arthritis Rheum. 1992;22(2):106–113. doi: 10.1016/0049-0172(92)90004-W. [PubMed] [Cross Ref]

4. Semple R, Murley GS, Woodburn J, Turner DE. Tibialis posterior in health and disease: a review of structure and function with specific reference to electromyographic studies. Journal of Foot and Ankle Research. 2009;2:24. doi:10.1186/1757-1146-2-24.

link to free full text: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2739849

5. Murley GS1, Menz HB2, Landorf KB2.  Electromyographic patterns of tibialis posterior and related muscles when walking at different speeds. Gait Posture 2014 Apr;39(4):1080-5. doi: 10.1016/j.gaitpost.2014.01.018. Epub 2014 Feb

6. Kaye RA1, Jahss MH.  Tibialis posterior: a review of anatomy and biomechanics in relation to support of the medial longitudinal arch. Foot Ankle. 1991 Feb;11(4):244-7.

7. Rabbito M, Pohl MB, Humble N, Ferber R. Biomechanical and Clinical Factors Related to Stage I Posterior Tibial Tendon Dysfunction.  J Orthop Sports Phys Ther, Epub 12 July  2011.doi:10.2519/jospt.2011.3545.

 8. Howitt S, Jung S, Hammonds N. Conservative treatment of a tibias posterior strain in a novice triathlete: a case report. J Can Chiropr Assoc. 2009 Mar;53(1):23-31.   link to free full text: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2652628/

9.   Lou XF, Yang XD, Jiang SH, Sun CY, Zhang RF.[Study on angle and depth of needle insertion in acupuncture at Zusanli (ST 36)]. Zhongguo Zhen Jiu. 2006 Jul;26(7):483-6

10. https://functionalanatomyblog.com/2009/11/26/the-sural-nerve-anatomy-and-entrapment/

11. Enrique Ginzburg, ... Norman M. Rich VASCULAR ANATOMY OF THE EXTREMITIES in Current Therapy of Trauma and Surgical Critical Care, Mosby; Pages 467–472 2008

Podcast 129: The Random Topic Podcast.

Links to find the podcast:

iTunes page: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/the-gait-guys-podcast/id559864138?mt=2

http://traffic.libsyn.com/thegaitguys/pod_129final.mp3

http://thegaitguys.libsyn.com/podcast-129

Key Tagwords:

usain bolt, gait, gait asymmetry, isometrics, isotonics, RF ablation, COOLIEF, OA, deafferentation, knee arthritis, ibuprofin, kidney damage, NSAIDS, heel drop, achilles, tendonitis, heel pain, 

Our Websites:
www.thegaitguys.com

summitchiroandrehab.com   doctorallen.co     shawnallen.net


Our website is all you need to remember. Everything you want, need and wish for is right there on the site.
Interested in our stuff ? Want to buy some of our lectures or our National Shoe Fit program? Click here (thegaitguys.com or thegaitguys.tumblr.com) and you will come to our websites. In the tabs, you will find tabs for STORE, SEMINARS, BOOK etc. We also lecture every 3rd Wednesday of the month on onlineCE.com. We have an extensive catalogued library of our courses there, you can take them any time for a nominal fee (~$20).
 
Our podcast is on iTunes, Soundcloud, and just about every other podcast harbor site, just google "the gait guys podcast", you will find us.
 
Show Notes:

Healing Tech in Neuroscience:

New device can heal with a single touch
https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation-now/2017/08/07/miracle-device-can-heal-single-touch-and-even-repair-brain-injuries/537326001/

Cool radiofrequency ablation
http://www.nbcnews.com/health/health-news/cool-new-knee-procedure-eases-arthritis-pain-without-surgery-n771221

Updates on Ibuprofin in runners
http://womensrunning.competitor.com/2017/07/news/ibuprofen-risks-endurance-runners_78580#EyIoMyAdkPW9UBpP.97

PeerJ. 2017 Jul 19;5:e3592. doi: 10.7717/peerj.3592. eCollection 2017.
Sonographic evaluation of the immediate effects of eccentric heel drop exercise on Achilles tendon and gastrocnemius muscle stiffness using shear wave elastography.
Leung WKC1, Chu KL1, Lai C1.

Front Physiol. 2017 Feb 28;8:91. doi: 10.3389/fphys.2017.00091. eCollection 2017.
Quantification of Internal Stress-Strain Fields in Human Tendon: Unraveling the Mechanisms that Underlie Regional Tendon Adaptations and Mal-Adaptations to Mechanical Loading and the Effectiveness of Therapeutic Eccentric Exercise.
Maganaris CN1, Chatzistergos P2, Reeves ND3, Narici MV4.

Oman Med J. 2010 Jul; 25(3): 155–1661.
An Overview of Clinical Pharmacology of Ibuprofen
Rabia Bushra* and Nousheen Aslam
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3191627/

Pharm Biol. 2014 Feb;52(2):182-6. doi: 10.3109/13880209.2013.821665. Epub 2013 Sep 30.
Zizyphus jujuba protects against ibuprofen-induced nephrotoxicity in rats. Awad DS1, Ali RM, Mhaidat NM, Shotar AM.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24074058

Gait asymmetry ?
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28759127
Scand J Med Sci Sports. 2017 Jul 31. doi: 10.1111/sms.12953. [Epub ahead of print]
Kinematic stride cycle asymmetry is not associated with sprint performance and injury prevalence in athletic sprinters.
Haugen T1, Danielsen J2, McGhie D2, Sandbakk Ø1,2, Ettema G2.

Achilles Tendinitis?

You should read this study if you haven't already

We all treat different forms of achilles tendinitis and tendonosis. This landmark study uses loaded eccentrics and showed better tendon organization and decreased tendon thickness at follow up. 

Tendons do seem to respond better to tension and loaded eccentrics certainly seems to do the job. Though, this study is 2004 and much new research has leaned us all more toward looking at pain free isometrics , in other words, taking that tension in a pain free single range load and helping the tendon to reestablish appropriate stiffness. Tension and time under pain free load is the key, then expanding from that into more dynamic load challenges like eccentrics. But, as always, it is finding the load your client can pain free tolerate, get the organism to reload the tissue without threat and then build durability and tissue tolerance to load.

"Conclusions: Ultrasonographic follow up of patients with mid-portion painful chronic Achilles tendinosis treated with eccentric calf muscle training showed a localised decrease in tendon thickness and a normalised tendon structure in most patients. Remaining structural tendon abnormalities seemed to be associated with residual pain in the tendon."

Ohberg L, Lorentzon R, Alfredson H, Maffulli N. Eccentric training in patients with chronic Achilles tendinosis: normalised tendon structure and decreased thickness at follow up. British Journal of Sports Medicine. 2004;38(1):8-11. doi:10.1136/bjsm.2001.000284.

link to abstract: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1724744/

Podcast 122: Achilles problems, glutes, & feet.

Key tag words:
neuroscience, elon musk, achilles, tendonitis, tendonopathy, eccentric loading, tendon loading, gluteus maximus, gmax, glutes, abductor hallucis, foot pain, hip biomechanics, navicular drop, BEAR, ACL tear, ACL reconstruction, plantar fascitis
 

Show links:

http://traffic.libsyn.com/thegaitguys/pod_122f.mp3

http://thegaitguys.libsyn.com/podcast-122-achilles-problems-glutes-the-feet
Show sponsors:
 www.newbalancechicago.com


www.thegaitguys.com
That is our website, and it is all you need to remember. Everything you want, need and wish for is right there on the site.
Interested in our stuff ? Want to buy some of our lectures or our National Shoe Fit program? Click here (thegaitguys.com or thegaitguys.tumblr.com) and you will come to our websites. In the tabs, you will find tabs for STORE, SEMINARS, BOOK etc. We also lecture every 3rd Wednesday of the month on onlineCE.com. We have an extensive catalogued library of our courses there, you can take them any time for a nominal fee (~$20).
 
Our podcast is on iTunes, Soundcloud, and just about every other podcast harbor site, just google "the gait guys podcast", you will find us.
 
Show Notes:

Stanford Develops Computer That Literally Plugs Into People's Brains

https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/289645


Elon Musk says humans must become cyborgs to stay relevant. 

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/feb/15/elon-musk-cyborgs-robots-artificial-intelligence-is-he-right

1. achilles tendonopathy:

http://www.jospt.org/doi/abs/10.2519/jospt.2016.6462?platform=hootsuite&code=jospt-site

2. achilles tendinitis and tendonosis.

Ohberg L, Lorentzon R, Alfredson H, Maffulli N. Eccentric training in patients with chronic Achilles tendinosis: normalised tendon structure and decreased thickness at follow up. British Journal of Sports Medicine. 2004;38(1):8-11. doi:10.1136/bjsm.2001.000284.

link to abstract: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1724744/

3. Is Achilles tendon blood flow related to foot pronation?
 E. Wezenbeek,T. M. Willems,N. Mahieu,I. Van Caekenberghe,E. Witvrouw,D. De Clercq

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/sms.12834/full

4.  The effects of gluteus maximus and abductor hallucis strengthening exercises for four weeks on navicular drop and lower extremity muscle activity during gait with flatfoot

Young-Mi Goo, MS, PT,1 Tae-Ho Kim, PhD, PT,1,* and Jin-Yong Lim, MS, PT1  J Phys Ther Sci. 2016 Mar; 28(3): 911–915.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4842464/

5. BEAR
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k3g-CagCrZM

Bridge-Enhanced Anterior Cruciate Ligament Repair (BEAR) procedure uses stitches and a bridging scaffold (a sponge injected with the patient’s blood) to stimulate healing of the torn ACL eliminating the need tendon graft.

References:
Murray, M., Flutie, B., Kalish, L., Ecklund, K., Fleming, B., Proffen, B. and Micheli, L. (2016). The Bridge-Enhanced Anterior Cruciate Ligament Repair (BEAR) Procedure: An Early Feasibility Cohort Study. Orthopaedic Journal of Sports Medicine, 4(11).

L. Proffen, B., S. Perrone, G., Roberts, G. and M. Murray, M. (2015). Bridge-Enhanced ACL Repair: A Review of the Science and the Pathway Through FDA Investigational Device Approval. Annals of Biomedical Engineering, 43(3), pp.805-818.

Acute tendon changes in intense CrossFit workouts

Study: Acute tendon changes in intense CrossFit workout

Habitually overloaded tendons often thicken and increase the tendonopathy risks -- nothing new here.
However as this study points out "it remains unknown whether acute overload caused by strenuous, high-intensity exercise will exert changes in tendons and if these changes can be detected and described by ultrasonography."

This study (note: Achilles, and plantaris tendon ultrasounds were performed before and after a specific workout in 34 healthy subjects)
. . . .noted "a significant increase in the thickness of the patellar and Achilles tendons" in response to strenuous, highly intense CrossFit exercises. Cross fit is not the culprit here, it is the load and load rate. None the less, it is good to know that an aggressive workout can leave us more vulnerable. This is why adequate rest and recovery must be part of your regular weekly workouts. One cannot keep fully stomping on the gas pedal over and over, workout after workout, and not expect problems to creep in if adequate recovery time has not been afforded to the working parts. This study showed changes after just one workout. No rocket science here today, we should see changes, load was applied. This is just good old fashioned "well duh, that makes sense". Here is the problem, we don't always listen to logic, nor do our clients who have goals and timeframes. We live in the "more is better" world now, so stay vigilant on logic gang. Dial your foolish clients in a little, save them some grief.  Yes, this goes for runners and all other venues of activity, there is a reason why we see problems in people with speed workouts more frequently than base miles.

Acute tendon changes in intense CrossFit workout: an observational cohort study. F. Y. Fisker et al
http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/sms.12781/full

Achilles Tendonitis/Tendinopathy and Needling    Achilles pain. You can’t live with it and you can’t live with it. Can needling help? The obvious answer is yes, but there is more as well.    There appears to be sufficient data to support the use of needling for achilles tendon problems . Perhaps it is the “reorganization” of collagen that makes it effective or a blood flow/vascularization phenomenon. The mechanism probably has something to do with pain and the reticular formation sending information down the cord via the lateral cell column (intermediolateral cell nucleus) or pain (nociceptive) afferents sending a collateral in the spinal cord to the dysfunctional muscle, affecting the alpha receptors and causing vasodilation.   Loss of ankle dorsiflexion is a common factor that seems to contribute to achilles tendinopathies . It would seem that improving ankle rocker would be most helpful. In at least one study, needling restored ankle function and in another it improved strength.   And don’t forget to go north of the lower leg/foot/ankle complex. The gluteus medius can many times the culprit as well. During running, the gluteus medius usually fires before heel strike, most likely to stabilize the hip and the pelvis. In runners with Achilles Tendonitis, its firing is delayed which may affect the kinematics of knee and ankle resulting in rear foot inversion. Perhaps the delayed action of the gluteus medius allows an adductory moment of the pelvis, moving the center of gravity medially. This could conceivably place additional stress on the achilles tendon (via the lateral gastroc) to create more eversion of the foot from midstance onward.   Similarly, in runners with achilles tendoinopathy, the gluteus maximus does not fire as long and activation is delayed. The glute max should be the primary hip extensor and decreased hip extension might be compensated by an increased ankle plantarflexion which could potentially increase the load on the Achilles tendon.   So, in short, yes, needling will probably help, for these reasons and probably many more. Make sure to needle all the dysfunctional muscles up the chain, beginning at the foot and moving rostrally.    Effectiveness of Acupuncture Therapies to Manage Musculoskeletal Disorders of the Extremities: A Systematic Review. Cox J, Varatharajan S, Côté P, Optima Collaboration. J Orthop Sports Phys Ther. 2016 Jun;46(6):409-29. doi: 10.2519/jospt.2016.6270. Epub 2016 Apr 26    Acupuncture’s role in tendinopathy: new possibilities. Speed C. Acupunct Med. 2015 Feb;33(1):7-8. doi: 10.1136/acupmed-2014-010746. Epub 2015 Jan 9.   The effect of electroacupuncture on tendon repair in a rat Achilles tendon rupture model.  Inoue M, Nakajima M, Oi Y, Hojo T, Itoi M, Kitakoji H. Acupunct Med. 2015 Feb;33(1):58-64. doi: 10.1136/acupmed-2014-010611. Epub 2014 Oct 21.  KIishmishian B, Selfe J, Richards J A Historical Review of Acupuncture to the Achilles Tendon and the development of a standardized protocol for its use Journal of the Acupuncture Association of Chartered Physiotherpists Spring 2012,  69-78  Acupuncture for chronic Achilles tendnopathy: a randomized controlled study. Zhang BM1, Zhong LW, Xu SW, Jiang HR, Shen J. Chin J Integr Med. 2013 Dec;19(12):900-4. doi: 10.1007/s11655-012-1218-4. Epub 2012 Dec 21.  The effect of dry needling and treadmill running on inducing pathological changes in rat Achilles tendon. Kim BS, Joo YC, Choi BH, Kim KH, Kang JS, Park SR. Connect Tissue Res. 2015 Nov;56(6):452-60. doi: 10.3109/03008207.2015.1052876. Epub 2015 Jul 29.  Tendon needling for treatment of tendinopathy: A systematic review. Krey D, Borchers J, McCamey K. Phys Sportsmed. 2015 Feb;43(1):80-6. doi: 10.1080/00913847.2015.1004296. Epub 2015 Jan 22. Review.  Acupuncture increases the diameter and reorganisation of collagen fibrils during rat tendonhealing. de Almeida Mdos S, de Freitas KM, Oliveira LP, Vieira CP, Guerra Fda R, Dolder MA, Pimentel ER. Acupunct Med. 2015 Feb;33(1):51-7. doi: 10.1136/acupmed-2014-010548. Epub 2014 Aug 19.  Electroacupuncture increases the concentration and organization of collagen in a tendon healing model in rats. de Almeida Mdos S, de Aro AA, Guerra Fda R, Vieira CP, de Campos Vidal B, Rosa Pimentel E. Connect Tissue Res. 2012;53(6):542-7. doi: 10.3109/03008207.2012.710671. Epub 2012 Aug 14.  Changes in blood circulation of the contralateral Achilles tendon during and after acupunctureand heating.Kubo K, Yajima H, Takayama M, Ikebukuro T, Mizoguchi H, Takakura N. Int J Sports Med. 2011 Oct;32(10):807-13. doi: 10.1055/s-0031-1277213. Epub 2011 May 26.  Microcirculatory effects of acupuncture and hyperthermia on Achilles tendon microcirculation. Kraemer R, Vogt PM, Knobloch K. Eur J Appl Physiol. 2010 Jul;109(5):1007-8. doi: 10.1007/s00421-010-1442-6. Epub 2010 Mar 28.  Effects of acupuncture and heating on blood volume and oxygen saturation of human Achilles tendon in vivo. Kubo K, Yajima H, Takayama M, Ikebukuro T, Mizoguchi H, Takakura N. Eur J Appl Physiol. 2010 Jun;109(3):545-50. doi: 10.1007/s00421-010-1368-z. Epub 2010 Feb 6.   Insertional achilles tendinopathy associated with altered transverse compressive and axial tensile strain during ankle dorsiflexion. Chimenti RL, Bucklin M, Kelly M, Ketz J, Flemister AS, Richards MS, Buckley MR. J Orthop Res. 2016 Jun 16. doi: 10.1002/jor.23338. [Epub ahead of print]  Forefoot and rearfoot contributions to the lunge position in individuals with and without insertionalAchilles tendinopathy. Chimenti RL, Forenza A, Previte E, Tome J, Nawoczenski DA.Clin Biomech (Bristol, Avon). 2016 Jul;36:40-5. doi: 10.1016/j.clinbiomech.2016.05.007. Epub 2016 May 11.  Ankle Power and Endurance Outcomes Following Isolated Gastrocnemius Recession for AchillesTendinopathy. Nawoczenski DA, DiLiberto FE, Cantor MS, Tome JM, DiGiovanni BF. Foot Ankle Int. 2016 Mar 17. pii: 1071100716638128. [Epub ahead of print]   In vivo quantification of the shear modulus of the human Achilles tendon during passive loading using shear wave dispersion analysis. Helfenstein-Didier C, Andrade RJ, Brum J, Hug F, Tanter M, Nordez A, Gennisson JL. Phys Med Biol. 2016 Mar 21;61(6):2485-96. doi: 10.1088/0031-9155/61/6/2485. Epub 2016 Mar 7.  Changes of gait parameters and lower limb dynamics in recreational runners with achillestendinopathy. Kim S, Yu J. J Sports Sci Med. 2015 May 8;14(2):284-9. eCollection 2015 Jun.  Gastrocnemius recession for foot and ankle conditions in adults: Evidence-based recommendations. Cychosz CC, Phisitkul P, Belatti DA, Glazebrook MA, DiGiovanni CW. Foot Ankle Surg. 2015 Jun;21(2):77-85. doi: 10.1016/j.fas.2015.02.001. Epub 2015 Feb 26. Review.  Limited ankle dorsiflexion increases the risk for mid-portion Achilles tendinopathy in infantry recruits: a prospective cohort study. Rabin A, Kozol Z, Finestone AS. J Foot Ankle Res. 2014 Nov 18;7(1):48. doi: 10.1186/s13047-014-0048-3. eCollection 2014.  Perry J. Gait Analysis: Normal and Pathological Function. Thorofare, NJ: Slack 1992.    Chan YY, Mok KM, Yung PSh, Chan KM. Sports Med Arthrosc Rehabil Ther Technol. 2009 Jul 30;1:14. doi: 10.1186/1758-2555-1-14.   Bilateral effects of 6 weeks’ unilateral acupuncture and electroacupuncture on ankle dorsiflexors muscle strength: a pilot study. Zhou S, Huang LP, Liu J, Yu JH, Tian Q, Cao LJ. Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2012 Jan;93(1):50-5. doi: 10.1016/j.apmr.2011.08.010. Epub 2011 Nov 8.  Franettovich Smith MM1, Honeywill C, Wyndow N, Crossley KM, Creaby MW. : Neuromotor control of gluteal muscles in runners with achilles tendinopathy.
Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2014 Mar;46(3):594-9.

Achilles Tendonitis/Tendinopathy and Needling


Achilles pain. You can’t live with it and you can’t live with it. Can needling help? The obvious answer is yes, but there is more as well.

There appears to be sufficient data to support the use of needling for achilles tendon problems . Perhaps it is the “reorganization” of collagen that makes it effective or a blood flow/vascularization phenomenon. The mechanism probably has something to do with pain and the reticular formation sending information down the cord via the lateral cell column (intermediolateral cell nucleus) or pain (nociceptive) afferents sending a collateral in the spinal cord to the dysfunctional muscle, affecting the alpha receptors and causing vasodilation. 

Loss of ankle dorsiflexion is a common factor that seems to contribute to achilles tendinopathies . It would seem that improving ankle rocker would be most helpful. In at least one study, needling restored ankle function and in another it improved strength. 

And don’t forget to go north of the lower leg/foot/ankle complex. The gluteus medius can many times the culprit as well. During running, the gluteus medius usually fires before heel strike, most likely to stabilize the hip and the pelvis. In runners with Achilles Tendonitis, its firing is delayed which may affect the kinematics of knee and ankle resulting in rear foot inversion. Perhaps the delayed action of the gluteus medius allows an adductory moment of the pelvis, moving the center of gravity medially. This could conceivably place additional stress on the achilles tendon (via the lateral gastroc) to create more eversion of the foot from midstance onward.

Similarly, in runners with achilles tendoinopathy, the gluteus maximus does not fire as long and activation is delayed. The glute max should be the primary hip extensor and decreased hip extension might be compensated by an increased ankle plantarflexion which could potentially increase the load on the Achilles tendon. 

So, in short, yes, needling will probably help, for these reasons and probably many more. Make sure to needle all the dysfunctional muscles up the chain, beginning at the foot and moving rostrally.

Effectiveness of Acupuncture Therapies to Manage Musculoskeletal Disorders of the Extremities: A Systematic Review. Cox J, Varatharajan S, Côté P, Optima Collaboration. J Orthop Sports Phys Ther. 2016 Jun;46(6):409-29. doi: 10.2519/jospt.2016.6270. Epub 2016 Apr 26

Acupuncture’s role in tendinopathy: new possibilities. Speed C. Acupunct Med. 2015 Feb;33(1):7-8. doi: 10.1136/acupmed-2014-010746. Epub 2015 Jan 9.

The effect of electroacupuncture on tendon repair in a rat Achilles tendon rupture model.  Inoue M, Nakajima M, Oi Y, Hojo T, Itoi M, Kitakoji H. Acupunct Med. 2015 Feb;33(1):58-64. doi: 10.1136/acupmed-2014-010611. Epub 2014 Oct 21.

KIishmishian B, Selfe J, Richards J A Historical Review of Acupuncture to the Achilles Tendon and the development of a standardized protocol for its use Journal of the Acupuncture Association of Chartered Physiotherpists Spring 2012,  69-78

Acupuncture for chronic Achilles tendnopathy: a randomized controlled study. Zhang BM1, Zhong LW, Xu SW, Jiang HR, Shen J. Chin J Integr Med. 2013 Dec;19(12):900-4. doi: 10.1007/s11655-012-1218-4. Epub 2012 Dec 21.

The effect of dry needling and treadmill running on inducing pathological changes in rat Achilles tendon. Kim BS, Joo YC, Choi BH, Kim KH, Kang JS, Park SR. Connect Tissue Res. 2015 Nov;56(6):452-60. doi: 10.3109/03008207.2015.1052876. Epub 2015 Jul 29.

Tendon needling for treatment of tendinopathy: A systematic review.
Krey D, Borchers J, McCamey K. Phys Sportsmed. 2015 Feb;43(1):80-6. doi: 10.1080/00913847.2015.1004296. Epub 2015 Jan 22. Review.

Acupuncture increases the diameter and reorganisation of collagen fibrils during rat tendonhealing.
de Almeida Mdos S, de Freitas KM, Oliveira LP, Vieira CP, Guerra Fda R, Dolder MA, Pimentel ER. Acupunct Med. 2015 Feb;33(1):51-7. doi: 10.1136/acupmed-2014-010548. Epub 2014 Aug 19.

Electroacupuncture increases the concentration and organization of collagen in a tendon healing model in rats.
de Almeida Mdos S, de Aro AA, Guerra Fda R, Vieira CP, de Campos Vidal B, Rosa Pimentel E. Connect Tissue Res. 2012;53(6):542-7. doi: 10.3109/03008207.2012.710671. Epub 2012 Aug 14.

Changes in blood circulation of the contralateral Achilles tendon during and after acupunctureand heating.Kubo K, Yajima H, Takayama M, Ikebukuro T, Mizoguchi H, Takakura N. Int J Sports Med. 2011 Oct;32(10):807-13. doi: 10.1055/s-0031-1277213. Epub 2011 May 26.

Microcirculatory effects of acupuncture and hyperthermia on Achilles tendon microcirculation. Kraemer R, Vogt PM, Knobloch K.
Eur J Appl Physiol. 2010 Jul;109(5):1007-8. doi: 10.1007/s00421-010-1442-6. Epub 2010 Mar 28.

Effects of acupuncture and heating on blood volume and oxygen saturation of human Achilles tendon in vivo. Kubo K, Yajima H, Takayama M, Ikebukuro T, Mizoguchi H, Takakura N. Eur J Appl Physiol. 2010 Jun;109(3):545-50. doi: 10.1007/s00421-010-1368-z. Epub 2010 Feb 6.

 Insertional achilles tendinopathy associated with altered transverse compressive and axial tensile strain during ankle dorsiflexion. Chimenti RL, Bucklin M, Kelly M, Ketz J, Flemister AS, Richards MS, Buckley MR.
J Orthop Res. 2016 Jun 16. doi: 10.1002/jor.23338. [Epub ahead of print]

Forefoot and rearfoot contributions to the lunge position in individuals with and without insertionalAchilles tendinopathy. Chimenti RL, Forenza A, Previte E, Tome J, Nawoczenski DA.Clin Biomech (Bristol, Avon). 2016 Jul;36:40-5. doi: 10.1016/j.clinbiomech.2016.05.007. Epub 2016 May 11.

Ankle Power and Endurance Outcomes Following Isolated Gastrocnemius Recession for AchillesTendinopathy. Nawoczenski DA, DiLiberto FE, Cantor MS, Tome JM, DiGiovanni BF. Foot Ankle Int. 2016 Mar 17. pii: 1071100716638128. [Epub ahead of print]

 In vivo quantification of the shear modulus of the human Achilles tendon during passive loading using shear wave dispersion analysis.
Helfenstein-Didier C, Andrade RJ, Brum J, Hug F, Tanter M, Nordez A, Gennisson JL. Phys Med Biol. 2016 Mar 21;61(6):2485-96. doi: 10.1088/0031-9155/61/6/2485. Epub 2016 Mar 7.

Changes of gait parameters and lower limb dynamics in recreational runners with achillestendinopathy. Kim S, Yu J. J Sports Sci Med. 2015 May 8;14(2):284-9. eCollection 2015 Jun.

Gastrocnemius recession for foot and ankle conditions in adults: Evidence-based recommendations. Cychosz CC, Phisitkul P, Belatti DA, Glazebrook MA, DiGiovanni CW. Foot Ankle Surg. 2015 Jun;21(2):77-85. doi: 10.1016/j.fas.2015.02.001. Epub 2015 Feb 26. Review.

Limited ankle dorsiflexion increases the risk for mid-portion Achilles tendinopathy in infantry recruits: a prospective cohort study. Rabin A, Kozol Z, Finestone AS. J Foot Ankle Res. 2014 Nov 18;7(1):48. doi: 10.1186/s13047-014-0048-3. eCollection 2014.

Perry J. Gait Analysis: Normal and Pathological Function. Thorofare, NJ: Slack 1992.

Chan YY, Mok KM, Yung PSh, Chan KM. Sports Med Arthrosc Rehabil Ther Technol. 2009 Jul 30;1:14. doi: 10.1186/1758-2555-1-14.

Bilateral effects of 6 weeks’ unilateral acupuncture and electroacupuncture on ankle dorsiflexors muscle strength: a pilot study. Zhou S, Huang LP, Liu J, Yu JH, Tian Q, Cao LJ. Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2012 Jan;93(1):50-5. doi: 10.1016/j.apmr.2011.08.010. Epub 2011 Nov 8.

Franettovich Smith MM1, Honeywill C, Wyndow N, Crossley KM, Creaby MW. : Neuromotor control of gluteal muscles in runners with achilles tendinopathy.
Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2014 Mar;46(3):594-9.

and what have we been saying about loss of ankle rocker and achilles tendon problems for years now?  Here is a FREE, FULL TEXT article talking all about it  “A more limited ankle Dorsi Flexion ROM as measured in Non Weight Bearing with the knee bent increases the risk of developing Achilles Tendinopathy among military recruits taking part in intensive physical training.”       J Foot Ankle Res.  2014 Nov 18;7(1):48. doi: 10.1186/s13047-014-0048-3. eCollection 2014.Limited ankle dorsiflexion increases the risk for mid-portion Achilles tendinopathy in infantry recruits: a prospective cohort study. Rabin A  1 ,  Kozol Z ,  Finestone AS .   link to full text:  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4243387/

and what have we been saying about loss of ankle rocker and achilles tendon problems for years now?

Here is a FREE, FULL TEXT article talking all about it

“A more limited ankle Dorsi Flexion ROM as measured in Non Weight Bearing with the knee bent increases the risk of developing Achilles Tendinopathy among military recruits taking part in intensive physical training.”


J Foot Ankle Res. 2014 Nov 18;7(1):48. doi: 10.1186/s13047-014-0048-3. eCollection 2014.Limited ankle dorsiflexion increases the risk for mid-portion Achilles tendinopathy in infantry recruits: a prospective cohort study.Rabin A1, Kozol Z, Finestone AS.

link to full text: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4243387/

Achilles Tendonitis   The motion needs to occur somewhere…Make sure you look at the whole picture  Since the knee was bent, perhaps we should be looking at the soleus? And the talo crural articulation?  “A more limited ankle Dorsi Flexion Range Of Motion as measured in Non Weight Bearing with the knee bent increases the risk of developing Achilles Tendonitis among military recruits taking part in intensive physical training.”  J Foot Ankle Res. 2014 Nov 18;7(1):48. doi: 10.1186/s13047-014-0048-3. eCollection 2014. Limited ankle dorsiflexion increases the risk for mid-portion Achilles tendinopathy in infantry recruits: a prospective cohort study. Rabin A1, Kozol Z1, Finestone AS2.

Achilles Tendonitis

The motion needs to occur somewhere…Make sure you look at the whole picture

Since the knee was bent, perhaps we should be looking at the soleus? And the talo crural articulation?

“A more limited ankle Dorsi Flexion Range Of Motion as measured in Non Weight Bearing with the knee bent increases the risk of developing Achilles Tendonitis among military recruits taking part in intensive physical training.”

J Foot Ankle Res. 2014 Nov 18;7(1):48. doi: 10.1186/s13047-014-0048-3. eCollection 2014.
Limited ankle dorsiflexion increases the risk for mid-portion Achilles tendinopathy in infantry recruits: a prospective cohort study.
Rabin A1, Kozol Z1, Finestone AS2.

The mighty Gluteus Medius, in all its glory!   Perhaps the delayed action of the gluteus medius allows an adductory moment of the pelvis, moving the center of gravity medially. This could conceivably place additional stress on the achilles tendon  (via the lateral gastroc) to create more eversion of the foot from midstance on   “The results of the study demonstrate altered neuromuscular control of the GMED and GMED in runners with Achilles Tendonitis. During running, GMED typically activates before heel strike so as to stabilize the hip and the pelvis. In runners with Achilles Tendonitis, GMED is activated with a delay, which consequently might affect the kinematics of knee and ankle resulting in rear foot inversion. Similarly, GMAX is activated with a delay and for a shorter duration in runners with Achilles Tendonitis. GMAX is the primary hip extensor and via a kinetic chain, a decreased hip extension moment might be compensated by an increased ankle plantarflexion moment which could potentially increase the load on the Achilles tendon.”   Franettovich Smith MM1, Honeywill C, Wyndow N, Crossley KM, Creaby MW. : Neuromotor control of gluteal muscles in runners with achilles tendinopathy. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2014 Mar;46(3):594-9.

The mighty Gluteus Medius, in all its glory!

Perhaps the delayed action of the gluteus medius allows an adductory moment of the pelvis, moving the center of gravity medially. This could conceivably place additional stress on the achilles tendon  (via the lateral gastroc) to create more eversion of the foot from midstance on

“The results of the study demonstrate altered neuromuscular control of the GMED and GMED in runners with Achilles Tendonitis. During running, GMED typically activates before heel strike so as to stabilize the hip and the pelvis. In runners with Achilles Tendonitis, GMED is activated with a delay, which consequently might affect the kinematics of knee and ankle resulting in rear foot inversion. Similarly, GMAX is activated with a delay and for a shorter duration in runners with Achilles Tendonitis. GMAX is the primary hip extensor and via a kinetic chain, a decreased hip extension moment might be compensated by an increased ankle plantarflexion moment which could potentially increase the load on the Achilles tendon.”

Franettovich Smith MM1, Honeywill C, Wyndow N, Crossley KM, Creaby MW. : Neuromotor control of gluteal muscles in runners with achilles tendinopathy.
Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2014 Mar;46(3):594-9.

tumblr_nhoqkqFCHJ1qhko2so2_r1_250.jpg
tumblr_nhoqkqFCHJ1qhko2so4_r1_250.jpg
tumblr_nhoqkqFCHJ1qhko2so1_r1_250.jpg
tumblr_nhoqkqFCHJ1qhko2so3_r1_250.png

Thinking on your feet. You have less than 20 minutes with this gentleman, as he has to leave to catch a plane. See how you did. 

Lateral foot pain and cowboy boots?

A 55 YO male patient presents with pain in his left foot area of the cuboid and tail of the fifth metatarsal.  He was told that he had a “locked cuboid” on this side by his chiropractor, who provided some treatment and temporary relief. There has been  no history of trauma and Most recently, he has been wearing cowboy boots and doing “a lot of walking” particularly when he was over in Europe and feels this was a precipitating factor.

Watching him walk in his cowboy boots, the rear foot and heel plate of the cowboy boot is worn into varus. Gait evaluation reveals his left foot to remain in supination (and thus in varus) throughout the entire gait cycle. 

Examination of the foot revealed loss of long axis extension at the metatarsophalangeal and interphalangeal articulations. The cuboid appeared to be moving appropriately. (to see why cuboid function is integral, see this post here. ) There was weakness in the peroneus brevis and peroneus longus musculature with reactive trigger points in the belly of each.  There is tenderness over the tail of the fifth metatarsal and the groove where the peroneal muscle travels through as well as in the peroneal tendon as it travels through here. 

So, what’s up?

This patient has peroneal tendonitis at the point around the foot as it goes around the tail of the fifth metatarsal. Discomfort is dull and achy in this area.  The cowboy boot is putting his foot in some degree of supination (plantar flexion, inversion adduction); this combined with the rear foot varus (from wear on the heel) is creating excessive load on the peroneus longus, which is trying to descend the 1st ray and create a stable medial tripod. Look at the pictures above and check out this post here

What did we do?

Temporarily, we created a valgus post on an insole for him.  This will push him onto his 1st metatarsal as he goes through  midstance into termiinal stance. He was asked to discontinue using the boot until we could get the heel resoled with a very slight valgus cant. We also treated with neuromuscular acupuncture over the peroneal group (GB 34, GB 35, GB 36 and a few Ashi points between GB34 and 35) circle the Dragon about the tail of fifth metatarsal, GB41 as well as the insertion of peroneus onto the base of the first metatarsal (approximately SP4).   We K-taped the peroneus longus to facilitate function of peroneus longus.  He was given peroneus longus (plantarflexion and eversion) and peroneus brevis (dorsiflexion and eversion) theraband exercises. 

How did you do? Easy peasy, right? If they were all only this straight forward….

 

The Gait Guys. teaching you to think on your feet and increasing your gait literacy with each and every post. 

 

Oval Track Running Injuries, Part 2. The Details.

Last week we did a blog post on the problems that oval track running can set up in terms of injury and promoting asymmetry, LINK).  We wanted to briefly go back to that article to hit some details that many folks did not put together. 

Keep in mind as you read on that the scenario is the typical counterclockwise oval track running.  As it said in the study, “analysis indicated that the left (inside limb) invertors increased in strength significantly more than the right (outside limb) invertors while the right evertors increased in strength significantly more than the left evertors.”

What this means is that someone who runs repeatedly counterclockwise on an oval track will drive skill, endurance and strength (the 3 basic tenets to solidifying a motor pattern) into the inside limb invertor muscles. This means the tibialis posterior, medial gastrocsoleus complex, flexor hallucis longus (likely) as well as some of the medial foot intrinsics. Because they are invertors, they are fighting the pronatory eversion forces on the track surface. These muscles will help to keep the ankle and foot neutral and slow the rate of foot pronation.  When these muscles are weak we see posterior shin splints in the left foot/ankle early in the track season. 
Whereas, the outside limb will be staving off the forces that want to launch the person off of the curves and off the outside of the track. Hence this limb will constantly redirect the forces inwards into the center of the track so that centripetal forces can continue to act to keep the runner on the curve (centripetal force is defined as a force which keeps a body moving with a uniform speed along a circular path and is directed along the radius towards the center). This means that the evertor muscles of the outside leg will be gaining skill, endurance and strength with every lap of training.  Hence, improvements in the peroneal group, the lateral gastrocsoleus namely.  Without these improvements the outside ankle would eventually fail and the forces are synonymous with inversion sprain mechanics.  Remember, here as well, these improvements in these muscle groups are designed to try and hold the ankle in a safe neutral biomechanical position and avoid inversion injury via the imparted forces.

It is also imperative to point out that the inside foot will see more ankle (mortise) dorsiflexion and eversion and the outside ankle will be seeing more (mortise) dorsiflexion and inversion.  We know that there are two heads to the tibialis anterior, one helps create more eversion and one more inversion.  Do we also want to see an imbalance and experience differential there as well ? If you have been with The Gait Guys for the last 4 years you will know that we harp on symmetrical ankle rocker range and function.  How can we expect to stay injury free with all this purposely driven asymmetrical skill, endurance and strength ?
Then one must remember that these muscular chains do not stop locally. If the inside foot invertor muscles are strengthened it is likely that the tonus and capabilities of the inner leg chain will be improved upon let alone the spiral chains as well.  Inner thigh groups including the adductors improve lower abdominal function from what we see in decades of clients. But remember, the outside leg is not seeing this same chain of muscles getting ramped up, rather it is seeing the lateral chain higher up improving which included the right gluteus medius to name just one. Furthermore, and we have talked about this until blue in the face, when  you have asymmetrical lower limb function you have asymmetrical upper limb swing.  We see shoulder and neck imbalances in our track athletes all the time.  And, then think about this, on non-track days what to many track athletes do ? They then go and drive massive strength into these asymmetries by going into the weight room and drive the problem deeper.

Our point here is that we are driving massive asymmetry into the human track machine. As as with any machine, loosen one bolt on one side and tighten the same bold on the other side and there will be a price to pay in the function of the machine. In the short term it will be one of performance, in the slightly longer term it will be one of injury.  As this study suggested, “ a high incidence of lower extremity injury (68%) occurred in this sample of runners, corresponding to an injury rate of 0.75 injuries per 100 person-hours of sport exposure. Although sample size was limited, secondary analysis indicated that strength changes were not significantly different for injured (n = 17) and uninjured (n = 8) runners (p > 0.05)”. Our response to the later statement is “give it time!”.  If you are one of these track athletes and are not injured, we like to say that you are likely lucky……. for now.
If you are a coach or an athlete, for the sake of your feet and legs……. use your head.
Shawn & Ivo
details, details, details……… because details matter.
______________________

Clin J Sport Med. 2000 Oct;10(4):245-50.

Asymmetrical strength changes and injuries in athletes training on a small radius curve indoor track.

Beukeboom C, Birmingham TB, Forwell L, Ohrling D.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

1) To evaluate strength changes in the hindfoot invertor and evertor muscle groups of athletes training and competing primarily in the counterclockwise direction on an indoor, unbanked track, and 2) to observe injuries occurring in these same runners over the course of an indoor season.

DESIGN:

Prospective observational study.

SETTING:

Fowler-Kennedy Sport Medicine Clinic, The University of Western Ontario, London, Ontario.

PARTICIPANTS:

A convenience sample of 25 intercollegiate, long sprinters (200-600 m) and middle distance runners (800-3,000 m) competing and training with the 1995-1996 University of Western Ontario Track and Field team.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:

A standardized protocol using the Cybex 6000 isokinetic dynamometer was used to measure peak torques of the hindfoot invertor and evertor muscle groups of both limbs using concentric and eccentric contractions performed at angular velocities of 60, 120, and 300 degrees/sec. Changes in peak torques between the preseason and postseason values were calculated and compared using a repeated measures analysis of variance test. Injury reports were collected by student athletic trainers and in the Sport Medicine and Physiotherapy clinic.

RESULTS:

Primary analysis indicated that the left (inside limb) invertors increased in strength significantly more than the right (outside limb) invertors (p = 0.01), while the right evertors increased in strength significantly more than the left evertors (p = 0.04). A high incidence of lower extremity injury (68%) occurred in this sample of runners, corresponding to an injury rate of 0.75 injuries per 100 person-hours of sport exposure. Although sample size was limited, secondary analysis indicated that strength changes were not significantly different for injured (n = 17) and uninjured (n = 8) runners (p > 0.05).

CONCLUSIONS:

The observed small, but statistically significant, asymmetrical changes in strength of the hindfoot invertor and evertor muscle groups can best be described as a training effect. Altered biomechanics proposed to occur in the stance foot while running on the curve of the track are discussed in relation to the observed strength imbalance. A causal link between strength changes and lower extremity injuries cannot be inferred from this study, but suggestions for further research are made.

tumblr_m96vfsCBSV1qhko2so1_1280.jpg
tumblr_m96vfsCBSV1qhko2so2_1280.jpg
tumblr_m96vfsCBSV1qhko2so3_1280.jpg
tumblr_m96vfsCBSV1qhko2so4_1280.jpg

READY

The Gait Guys Case of the week: What do you see?

This individual presents with Right achilles tendonitis, bilateral foot pain and a history of plantar fascitis. What do you think?

Take a look at his foot type, particularly the forefoot to rearfoot orientation. Hmmm….Asymmetrical. Notice the dropped 1st metatarsal on the left that is not present on the right. He has a forefoot valgus on the left with a quasi flexible 1st ray (1st ray = medial cuneiform, 1st metatarsal and associated phalanges) which is dropped and an uncompensated forefoot valgus on the right, with an inflexible 1st ray.

He has bilateral external tibial torsion (which you cannot see in these pictures) right greater than left (OK, you can see that), as well as a Left anatomically short leg (tibial) of approximately 7mm.

Now look at the pedographs. BIG difference from left to right. Good tripod on right with clear markings over the calcaneus, the head of 5th metetarsal and the head of 1st metatarsals.  But I thought you said he had an UNCOMPENSATED forefoot valgus ?  Look at the shape of the forefoot print. It is very different from right to left. Remember, with a forefoot valgus, the medial side of the foot hits the ground before the lateral side most of the time,

How about the left? Look at all that metatarsal pressure. Looks like a loss of ankle rocker. Think that might be causing some of that left sided foot pain? Notice the print under the 1st metatarsal is even greater; and look at all that printing of the 5th metatarsal head. Remember, this is the shorter leg side, so this foot will have a tendency to supinate more, thus he increased pressures laterally.

Achilles tendonitis?  Stand on one leg on your foot tripod and rock between the head of your 1st metatrsal and head of the 5th.  Where do you feel the strain? The gastroc/soleus and peroneals. Now put all your weight on the lead of the 1st metatarsal. What do you notice? The foot is everted. What everts the foot? The peroneals. So, if the foot is everted (like in the forefoot valgus), what muscle is left to shoulder the load? Remember also, that the gatroc/soleus group contracts from mid to late stance phase to invert the heel and assist with supination of the foot.

The Gait Guys. Your guiding light to gait literacy and competency.

Want to know more about pedographs? Get a copy of our book here.

All material copyright 2012 The Gait Guys/The Homunculus Group.