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Grant Speer:

(Holds up 3 fingers)

Today, we’re going to talk about the three major causes of functional foot pain. I’m Grant Speer with St. Johns Chiropractic & Performance. Now let’s dive in.

Grant Speer:

[St. Johns Chiropractic & Performance]

[3 Causes of Functional Foot Pain]

(Holds up 1 finger)

The first cause that we’re going to talk about is what we call pes planus which you may know as flat feet or fallen arches.

[#1 Fallen Arches]

It is represented pretty well here in this foot model. As you see, the arch is very low to the ground and the foot is very flat.

(Holding model foot)

[Image of flat foot]

It has very poor muscular support underneath the bottom of our feet in what we call our intrinsic foot muscles. But however, this foot is really good at absorbing shock. Unfortunately though, too much of a good thing isn’t always a good thing.

(Bends model foot’s toes)

We see that here with flat feet as the excess motion that comes with each step can over time result in pain because of the poor muscular support.

Grant Speer:

[#2 High Arches]

The second kind that we’re going to talk about is what we call pes cavus or higher arches.

(Gestures to model foot)

[Image of arched foot]

Pes cavus would tend to more look like this in our model there with a raised arch. Instead of having excess motion like pes planus, pes cavus or higher arches tend to have much stiffer joints. Even though it’s totally the opposite of having fallen arches, having high arches like in pes cavus can still cause foot pain and pain in other areas on up the lower body and even into the back. Research actually doesn’t show much of a difference in the injury rates between these two extreme variations in arches though the type of injury that you suffer from may be a little bit different.

Grant Speer:

[#3 Tight Posterior Tissues]

The final cause that we’re going to talk about today is having tight posterior tissues. This just means having tight calves or tight hamstrings. The reason this can be an issue is because the hamstrings insert to our calves near our knee and then our calves insert onto our foot near this bone right here

(Gestures to model foot)

called our calcaneus which you may know as your heel bone. If our calves or hamstrings are tight, then they pull on this calcaneus bone.

(Pulls on model foot bone)

[Image of foot and Calcaneous bone]

Pulling on our calcaneus is an issue because our plantar fascia and our intrinsic foot muscles sit right underneath here and connect to our calcaneus.

(Moves hand along bottom of model foot)

The tightness in our hamstrings and in our calves can create excess tension on the bottom of our feet and right by our heel which can then pull on our plantar fascia and our intrinsic foot muscles thus giving us the foot pain.

Grant Speer:

To leave you with some good news, there are therapies out there that can counteract these three causes of functional foot pain.

(Holds up 3 fingers)

These can include manipulation, mobilization, rehabilitation exercises, massage, soft tissue therapy and stretching. Be sure to watch our other videos and read our blogs to see some at-home foot exercises and stretches that you can do for your foot pain. I’m Grant Speer with St. Johns Chiropractic & Performance.

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