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Differences in Static and Dynamic Balance Task Performance Following Four Weeks of Intrinsic Foot Muscle Training: The Short Foot Exercise vs. The Towel Curl Exercise. J Sport Rehabil. 2012 Jun 18.
Proper functioning of the intrinsic foot musculature (IFM) is essential in maintaining the integrity of the medial longitudinal arch (MLA). Improper functioning of the IFM leads to excessive pronation of the foot, which has been linked to various pathologies. Therefore, training the IFM to avoid excessive pronation may help to prevent some of these pathologies; however, it is not clear how to train these muscles optimally.
To investigate the effects of two different types of IFM training on: (1) the height of the MLA, (2) static and dynamic balance task performance.
Randomized control trial, repeated measures mixed model design.
University biomechanics laboratory for testing and a home based training program.
24 healthy, university age volunteers (3 groups of 8) with no history of major lower limb pathology or balance impairment.
One experimental group performed 4 weeks of the short foot exercise (SFE) and the other performed 4 weeks of the towel curl exercise (TCE). Participants were asked to perform 100 repetitions of their exercise/day.
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:
(1) The navicular height during weight bearing, (2) the total range of movement of the center of pressure (COP) in the medial-lateral (ML) direction for (i) a static balance test, (ii) a dynamic balance test.
There were no differences in the navicular height or static balance tests. For the dynamic balance test, all groups decreased the ML COP movement on the dominant limb by a small amount (approximately 5 mm); however, the SFE group was able to decrease COP movement much more than the TCE group in the non-dominant limb.
The SFE appeared to train the IFM more effectively than the TCE; however, there were differing results between the dominant and non-dominant legs. These imbalances need to be taken into consideration by clinicians.
__________________ Craig Payne
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Re: Short Foot Exercise vs. The Towel Curl Exercise for Intrinsic Muscle Strength
I seem to remember a few years ago going to one of your lectures where you were measuring supinatory resistance using a device where you lifted the arch with a wide flexible band going under the medial long arch of the weight bearing foot. The band was attached to a spring weight scale such as used for weighing fish. You pulled up on the scale to find what lifting pressure it required to restore the arch if any. Did that study bear fruit?
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