Would you ever have thought that something so miniscule as big toe (metatarsophalangeal AKA) MTP mobility could plague your athletic career?
This is an often overlooked impairment and often times leads to compensations including:
Excessive knee flexion (bending), Excessive supination/pronation, Decreased Hip Extension
Here are 2 different exercises to help improve big toe mobility!
✅Shift your weight from back leg <-> front leg
✅To further the stretch you can lunge lower down
✅Begin in a quadruped position with your toes tucked under your foot
✅Hinge back onto your legs, the more weight you accept onto you legs the further you will stretch your big toe into extension
You want to make sure you have at minimum 60 degrees of great toe extension❗️
Your body is focused on task completion however this doesn't mean that your body is movement with ideal movement mechanics. Your body is smart and it will take the path of least resistance. To minimize compensations make sure to improve your big toe extension❗️
📝 During gait, as we push off our big toe extends. The extension draws our plantar fascia taut, effectively stabilizing the foot through what’s termed ‘the windlass mechanism.’ The benefits of a stable foot at push off are fairly obvious. Stability at push off gives you a rigid lever in which to generate large amounts of force. If our big toe lacks extension, not only will our foot lack the stability needed at every push off, but something up the chain (i.e. the foot, knee, or hips) will compensate for this lacking flexibility! Your big toe can potentially lead to big problems!