Podiatry can provide relief if you are experiencing lower back pain. The reason podiatry is effective is because the science of podiatry works with the positioning of the feet. When your feet move, it causes a chain reaction through the body including the lower back. Frequently, back pain is caused by malalignments within the feet, and between the feet and ground. Because Podiatrists are the health professionals specialised in lower limb biomechanics, we are able to help by assessing and treating these malalignments. There are a variety of orthotic treatment options to address these malalignments.
A Foot Mechanics Podiatrist will complete a Musculoskeletal assessment with you. In most cases, this will include a non weight bearing assessment of joint range of movement, muscle testing and a static assessment of your posture. It also includes walking and/or running gait analysis using digital video equipment to allow in-depth study of any abnormalities found and plantar pressure measurement to allow the Podiatrist to actually see the forces under your feet as you stand and walk, or run.
Podiatry can help abnormal Pronation
Pronation is a word that is thrown around often by shoe retailers; it is actually a medical word which describes a tri-planar motion involving adduction, plantar-flexion, and internal rotation. Pronation is a normal part of gait, but when it occurs at the wrong time, if the range of movement is abnormal or occurs too fast then this can lead to a chain reaction that travels from the foot to the lower back. Pain and injury can be the result if left untreated.
It is the role of a Podiatrist through a Biomechanical assessment to identify if Pronation is normal or abnormal leading to the development of symptoms.
Pronation produces an internal rotation of the lower limb, this in turn increases the curvature in the lower back, placing stress on the lower back joints and muscles. Read more about the research that correlates lower back pain with certain foot types.
Physical therapists can often offer pain relief by “freeing up” the muscles in the lower back, and this is worthwhile for pain relief. However, if your lower back pain is caused by poor foot alignment (abnormal Pronation) then your back pain is likely to re-occur, and you will return to see that therapist on an ongoing basis. If you have abnormal pronation Podiatry treatment is a great long term option for addressing the cause.
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