walk like a duck - foot rotation

Walk Like a Duck: Foot Rotation Techniques Can Slow Arthritis in Knees

In Conditions by Alnoor Ladhani, Chiropodist

Knee osteoarthritis is an extremely painful and debilitating condition. The condition is degenerative for many sufferers, often resulting in the need for surgical intervention. It is not uncommon for sufferers of knee osteoarthritis to go through knee replacement surgery as a last resort treatment to alleviate pain and restore movement.

However, surgical interventions can be avoided or significantly delayed through the use of alternative therapies. During the stance phase of gait, sufferers of OA typically experienced an increase in abnormal knee loads. Extensive research has been carried out on the subject in order to determine whether foot rotation is an effective treatment for sufferers of OA.

The Research

Osteoarthritis is a complex condition which affects each patient in different ways. Much of the research into the use of foot rotation as a therapy produced mixed results. In some patient studies, a reduction in the first loading peak was observed. However, in other cases it was the second peak which showed a reduction.

ankle rotation

Further study showed that each patient could benefit from foot rotation, so long as a full evaluation of the patient’s movements was carried out. The purpose of the evaluation is to create a movement profile which would allow therapist clinicians to create an effective foot rotation plan.

The effectiveness of foot rotation treatment is largely dictated by the availability of advanced analysis technologies. These technologies allow for a more accurate movement profile, which makes the task of choosing an appropriate foot rotation treatment easier.

Additionally, both toe-in and toe-out rotation treatments produced different results among patients involved in studies. Therefore, it is important that the correct rotation treatment is selected for each individual patient in real-world therapies.

Matching Treatment to Patients

Where movement analysis equipment is not available, patients can still receive beneficial foot rotation treatment. A chiropodist who has extensive experience in foot movement, gait, and rotation can determine the best course of treatment through a combination of therapies.

doctor treating patient

The two main indicators of effective foot rotation treatments for osteoarthritis sufferers are increased movement and pain reduction. However, it is important to understand that pain reduction alone does not qualify as improvement. Your chiropodist must create a comprehensive treatment plan which includes ongoing analysis of the effects of the chosen rotation treatment.

For any foot rotation treatment to produce positive results, therapy must concentrate on a number of movement mechanisms. The stance phases – from heel contact through toe-off – all contribute to the loading of the knees. By tweaking the rotational movements and angles of the stance phase during gait, the treatment can produce much more beneficial results for the patient.

Combining foot rotation treatments with other ongoing treatments will further increase improvement in the patient’s range of movement. These treatment options are designed to encourage changes in gait and foot movement, as opposed to short-term treatment plans to reverse damage.

Choosing a Clinician

Due to the complex evaluation needed to increase the effectiveness of foot rotation treatment, patients should consult with a clinician who is qualified in the treatment of foot related conditions. Alnoor A. Ladhani (Al), is a highly experienced chiropodist who can help sufferers of osteoarthritis gain the most benefit from foot rotation treatment.

At Step By Step you will be provided with a full evaluation of your needs, and you will have the opportunity to discuss your personal treatment goals. Each patient is different, so we will create a treatment and therapy plan that is tailored to your needs.

With our help, you can significantly reduce pain, discomfort, and limitations to movement. Contact Step By Step today to arrange a consultation to discuss your osteoarthritis and explore treatment options in a friendly and welcoming environment.