Morton’s Toe/Plantar Fasciitis - by admin@mcb on March 28 2017

Morton’s Toe/Plantar Fasciitis

Morton’s Foot Syndrome (commonly called “Morton’s Toe) is a condition where the first metatarsal is shorter than the second metatarsal. In a normal foot, both the first and second metatarsals are of the same length. Plantar Fasciitis is a condition where there is an inflammation of the plantar fascia, a thick band of connection tissue that joins the heel bone to the toes.

The Mechanics of a Normal Stride

With each step we take, our feet alternately push off the ground. For a fraction of a second, the first metatarsal bears the weight of the entire body. As the foot rolls forward, some of the pressure is shifted to the remaining foot bones.

Altered Mechanics of a Morton’s Toe Stride

For people who have Morton’s toe, the first metatarsal is shorter than the second, rolling the weight to the second metatarsal. This second metatarsal bone wasn’t designed for that amount of pressure. To compensate, the foot overpronates (rolls in the direction of the big toe) to recruit support to hold the excess weight.

As a result, the foot is momentarily unstable. This causes a chain reaction in the body, as other muscles and joints shift from their designed movement pattern to compensate for the instability. In the process, the plantar fascia experiences stress and damage which can lead to the painful condition of plantar fasciitis.

Pain from Morton’s Toe/Plantar Fasciitis

The overpronation can lead to pain in the ankle, knees, and hips. Muscles all along the leg form trigger points and myofascial pain. It has been estimated that as much as 80% of all myofascial pain is a direct result of Morton’s Foot Syndrome. (Source: Myofascial Pain and Dysfunction: The Trigger Point Manual, by Janet G. Travell, M.D. and David G. Simons, M.D.)

Massage for Morton’s Toe/Plantar Fasciitis

Massage therapists should assess their clients’ feet for  the classic signs of Morton’s Toe (a long second toe and/or hypermobility between the first and second metatarsal bones). When found, they need a two-pronged approach to treatment: educating their client how to mitigate the impact of the bone abnormality through the use of orthotics, and treating the trigger points and muscle abnormalities that have developed from the abnormal gait.

Massage CE Courses for Morton’s Toe and Plantar Fasciitis

Institute of Somatic Therapy offers two pathology courses that address foot pain. Both courses are valid for CEs for NCBTMB, Florida, Georgia, and most states.

Click below for details:

Morton’s Foot Syndrome

Plantar Fasciitis

Relieve a Common Source of Heel Pain With Athletic Taping - by admin@mcb on April 29 2015

Relieve a Common Source of Heel Pain With Athletic Taping

If you experience heel or foot pain, proper taping and bracing could be the key to relief. ©iStockphoto.com/paisan191
If you experience heel or foot pain, proper taping and bracing could be the key to relief. ©iStockphoto.com/paisan191

One of the most common sources of heel and foot pain in athletes is plantar fasciitis. This disorder of the heel and foot is often caused by overuse and may include significant inflammation and pain. The pain caused by plantar fasciitis can have a profound impact on an athlete’s ability to perform and may be relieved by proper bracing and taping.

Bracing and taping for plantar fasciitis can be performed in two specific instances. The first is to use the bracing and taping as a preventative method to avoid overstretching of the plantar fascia ligament. This will help to prevent further structural damage to the foot and heel. The other reason for bracing and taping is to treat a current case of plantar fasciitis. In these instances the bracing and taping should be used as part of a comprehensive approach to treat the athlete’s specific injury.

The Athletic Taping and Bracing course offered by the Institute of Somatic Therapy aims to train athletic trainers and other medical professionals in the proper methods to help treat unstable joints. The body is broken down into different regions and the specific bracing and taping methods are explained and demonstrated. The course also address anatomy, common injuries, and proper stretches and exercises for effective rehabilitation.

Understanding the specific needs of athletes is a focus of many of our online courses for massage therapy. Visit us online at the Institute of Somatic Therapy to learn more. You can choose from a variety of online courses for massage therapy to grow your practice and better meet the needs of your clients.