If you ever asked the question – why does my knee hurt – and you have never gotten the relief you wanted?
Then try the following.
This you won’t find on Wikipedia, which is why it’s called weird, because Wikipedia knows everything, right? Well if Wikipedia hasn’t worked for you, try this.
The culprit – your BIG TOE.
See how far back you can bend your big toe. If that sucker can’t bend back we might have a problem.
The image on the left is what it should look like.
Why is this important?
If you have knee pain while running, there is something we call a toe-off, and if you can’t bend your big toe and push through that toe while you are running, you will be running with a brick as a foot.
Compensation, adaptation and most probably pain somewhere else in the kinetic chain is what will follow. We are talking pain in your feet, knee, back, shoulder and/or neck.
The title says knee, so lets stick with the knee.
There is a lot of soft tissue and fascia under your feet and if the big toe can’t bend back, the whole foot is probably a problem. The less the big toe moves the more the knee has to move . This equals knee pain because of all that extra load and torque on the joint.
If you train in the gym and you have a big toe extension restriction (you can’t do what the picture looks like) a lot of movements will become a problem. Think the lunge, the big toe can’t bend, equals the hips suck at their job, equals the knee having to take a helluva punch.
I have seen people compensate in the weirdest ways in a variety of activities and movements and their problem was their big toe.
Sounds easy enough. Lets treat the toe and see what happens.
What to do?
- If you have this problem take a tennis ball and roll all the tender areas under your foot. Everyday.
- Take that big toe in your hand and start playing with it, get the big toe moving.
- Probably a good idea to start training those glutes.
- Wedge the big toe and do some calf raises, focusing on pushing through the big toe. (see picture)