Faulty foot biomechanics affect the whole chain of your body

Written by Mark Coles - Follow on Google+ | Facebook | Twitter

If your feet aren't moving, the rest of you isn't grooving. This phrase has stuck with me since my days study biomechanics. 

People always look at me gone out when I asses their feet. "How come you think my feet have something to do with my inability to build muscle"?

Over the years many people pick up ankle injuries through sport, women wear high heels, men and women wear shoes that limit ankle range of movement when they walk (often shoes with very rigid soles), and naturally the arches of your feet slowly break down as your age. All of these affect your biomechanics.


One of the most common things I see is locked up big toes. The big toe is so important when it comes to walking biomechanics (gait). So the more locked up the bog toe is, the shorter your walking pattern will be. This is turns creating tightness in your calves, tightness in your hips and adductors, it will slow down rotation at your spine and often cause you to round your upper back. All this from a locked up big toe.

So then think of all of these and consider if they could impact your movement when you train. Limited range of movement when you train will limit your ability to contract muscle, and therefore will limit your ability to grow.

In my rugby days I damaged the ligaments in my right ankle. As a result my right ankle was very unstable. Refusing to do anything about it when I started bodybuilding, I just worked around it. A few years later I was the one laid up with a prolapsed disk in my lumbar spine. Part of my rehab was to make my ankle more stable and then work back up through the chain. I now wear orthotics in my shoes for day to day and lifting. My glutes now work so much better and they also grew so much quicker, my squat pattern is balanced, my back doesn't cause me any problems, and I have a balanced physique again.

When assessing your biomechanics, you have to start from the ground and work up. Tight hips and limited mobility in your spine could be caused by poor foot biomechanics. If you're working with a coach who doesn't asses your feet and ankles, go and see someone who knows what to look out for.

Think outside the box and leave no stone unturned.

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