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Muscle Strength and Arch Height

Discussion in 'Biomechanics, Sports and Foot orthoses' started by NewsBot, Oct 2, 2010.

  1. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    Articles:
    1

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    Relationship between explosive muscle strength and medial longitudinal arch of the foot.
    Lizis P, Posadzki P, Smith T.
    Foot Ankle Int. 2010 Sep;31(9):815-22.
     
  2. DaVinci

    DaVinci Well-Known Member

    I thought that barefoot running is supposed to make muscles stronger and improve the height of the arch. As this study showed no correlation between strength and arch height, I guess that is another myth we can cross of the list of claims made by the barefoot runners.
     
  3. Craig Payne

    Craig Payne Moderator

    Articles:
    6
    You right. Another myth bites the dust.

    Actually I have been giving a bit of thought to the claims by barefoot runners that their arch "improves" as the "muscles strengthen"...as we know from the above research that this can not be the case (and clearly most of those in the barefoot running community have no idea of the different factors that actually control the height of the arch).

    What else could explain what they think they are seeing?

    We know the the range of 1st MPJ dorsiflexion is probably greater running barefoot than in shoes ... what does that mean? ... it means the windlass mechanism is probably working to a greater extent running barefoot. Imagine a runner with a forefoot supinatus and they are now using their windlass more as they are now running barefoot... probably what happens is some of the supinatus corrects because of the greater first ray plantarflexion from the more effective windlass .... that could easily account for an increase in arch height from barefoot running and it has nothing to do with muscle strength!
     
  4. pebbles

    pebbles Member

    Hi

    I haven't got access to the full text of the above study but I would of thought that a repetetive strength test to measure muscle function over a sustained period would be a better indicator of instrinsic muscle strength. How does a one off explosive strength test relate to everyday activity?

    Patrick
     
  5. LukerM

    LukerM Member

    Muscle strength wont directly affect so arch hight. But the fact that when you do strength exercise the muscles gain bulk and tighten. the tightening of the muscles then could appear to reform the arch. If the flexibility is still there then the muscle has laxity. If a body builder did nothing but small ranges of motion with his weights, the muscle bulk would reduce his range of motion, and the muscle would tighten from the fact he is not stretching them in any way. This the same idea with the foot. The only way the arch may reform though is if the foot muscles are bulking and losing flexibility. And remember that explosive power is different to strength. Power is a mixture of strength and speed. So you need to know what you are testing for. The next point is that tibialis posterior make up the arch. So would it not be more beneficial to do a strength test on that muscle and compare it to arch height?
    When barefoot running the muscles will be used to there maximum, and also with no foot support surely the joints will be put through a greater range of motion. the foot will therefore be working harder and strengthening muscles, but at the same time the muscle are being stretched further than if they had support in a shoe.
     
  6. Dananberg

    Dananberg Active Member

    Lets not jump to the conclusion that running barefoot doesn't strengthen intrinsic foot muscles. This study simply evaluated lower leg muscle strength and found that there is no correlation to arch height. How does this fail to support the contention from the barefoot running community about foot strengthening from barefoot activity? Seems to me it has nothing to do with it.

    I have a patient who on several occassions requires some foot manipulation....and this was because of a TN joint fracture he suffered in a rock climbing accident years ago. He is otherwise fine. He has hiked the highest peak in New Hampshire, Mt. Washington (6288 ft) barefoot on multiple occassions. His arch muscles are so developed and his feet are so strong, that it occurred to me on his initial visit that the majority of the patients we see in our clinics daily are "deconditioned". Barefoot running is clearly not for everyone...but for a select few....it would seem that the benefits would outweight the risks. For those multitudes of "deconditioned" patients...foot strengthening may help....and certainly not hurt.

    Howard
     
  7. Craig Payne

    Craig Payne Moderator

    Articles:
    6
    Howard - I do not deny for one minute that barefoot running has the potential to lead to stronger muscles. My issue is with the unsupported claims you frequently read by barefoot runners that it is this increase in muscle strength that leads to the higher arch profile that many of them are claiming they see in themselves. The study quoted above would appear to refute those claims and I offered an alternative theoretical explanation for in above.
     
  8. Dananberg

    Dananberg Active Member

    Craig,

    In my travels, I have seen people walking poolside in the Vibram 5 finger shoes. Frightening what they could potentially do to themselves. We agree that the hype has the potential to injure many.

    I believe that Steven Robbins publised quite some time ago, and did measure arch height in a group who ran barefoot over a summer and found an increase. He was of the opinion that by having the body react to noxious stimuli from the ground, reflexive responses would stabilize the foot. One quote from this article "cushioned shoes anesthesized feet", always resonated well with me. The barefoot concept did not originate with Born to Run.

    I agree with your contention that more MTP joint dorsiflexion, the higher arch height will ultimately become as form must follow function. I have also seen the reduction in supinatus when MTP joint dorsiflexion is encouraged with a foot orthotic, as well in substantial increases in the general mobility of all foot joints.

    Howard
     
  9. If we model the longitudinal arch of the foot as a load-sharing structure, which I just lectured on in San Diego this last weekend, then from superficial to deep, the loads in the longitudinal arch are shared by the following tensile load-bearing structures:

    Plantar aponeurosis
    Plantar intrinsics
    Extrinsic muscles (deep posterior compartment and peroneus longus muscles)
    Plantar ligaments

    Therefore, it seems clear to me the plantar instrinsics have signficant potential to mechanically cause a rearfoot dorsiflexion moment and a forefoot plantarflexion moment (i.e. a longitudinal arch raising moment), but certainly don't act by themselves to do so.

    Another complicating factor is that as the intrinsic muscles hypertrophy with increased strength, even though the arch-raising effect for these muscles increase, the plantar longitudinal arch contour may actually decrease due to the increased mass of muscles in the arch. When we start to discuss this topic of "longitudinal arch height", we must be very clear if we are talking about the osseous contour of the longitudinal arch, or the plantar soft tissue contour of the longitudinal arch.

    I have also examined the feet of habitually barefoot individuals and certainly their intrinsic musculature seem different than other types of feet. However, I have also examined some very strong-looking feet in individuals who nearly always wear shoes but who are involved in running and jumping sports.

    The argument could be made that if you are able to run faster and longer and more frequently in the optimum shoe compared to what you could run while only barefoot, then the reduction in running speed, duration and frequency while barefoot would weaken the muscles of the feet when compared to when the athlete is wearing shoes. Maybe wearing running shoes actually strengthens the feet versus running barefoot due to this factor?

    I am not impressed in any way by the argument that all shoes weaken feet, but certainly there are some styles of shoes that could do so. Remember, "shoes" means anything that covers the feet and this means a huge number of shoe design permutations (including Vibram FiveFinger Shoes). However, I would imagine that unless the individual can walk and do activities all day while barefoot, that there be only a minor strengthening benefit from being barefoot, while significantly increasing the risk of injury when locomoting on the wide variety of surfaces encountered in our environment.

    Interesting discussion.
     
  10. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    Articles:
    1
    From the 2012 ACSM Conference:
    The Relationship Between The Toe Exercises And The Medial Longitudinal Arch
    Takashi Shiro****a, Toru Fukubayashi
     
  11. Craig Payne

    Craig Payne Moderator

    Articles:
    6
  12. Sicknote

    Sicknote Active Member

    I can't really see the the towel curl exercise being very effective.

    I know from experience that walking long distances in gusset plimsolls to be beneficial for arch height.

    But you have to concentrate on walking & pushing off a certain part of the foot.
     
  13. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    Articles:
    1
    Toe Flexor Strength and Foot Arch Height in Children.
    Morita N, Yamauchi J, Kurihara T, Fukuoka R, Otsuka M, Okuda T, Ishizawa N, Nakajima T, Nakamichi R, Matsuno S, Kamiie S, Shide N, Kambayashi I, Shinkaiya H.
    Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2014 Jun 3
     
  14. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    Articles:
    1
    Associations between toe grip strength and hallux valgus, toe curl ability, and foot arch height in Japanese adults aged 20 to 79 years: a cross-sectional study
    Daisuke Uritani, Takahiko Fukumoto, Daisuke Matsumoto and Masayuki Shima
    Journal of Foot and Ankle Research 2015, 8:18 doi:10.1186/s13047-015-0076-7
     
  15. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    Articles:
    1
    Correlation of Arch Height Measurement and Foot Strength
    David B. Griffin, Mark T. Olsen, Kara E. Seabrook, Sarah T. Ridge, A. Wayne Johnson, J. William Myrer.
    Presented at the ACSM Meeting; San Diego May 2015
     
  16. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    Articles:
    1
    Children with flat feet have weaker toe grip strength than those having a normal arch
    Yuto Tashiro et al
    Journal of Physical Therapy Science; Vol. 27 (2015) No. 11 November p. 3533-3536
     
  17. Craig Payne

    Craig Payne Moderator

    Articles:
    6
    ...decreased arch height with strengthen toe flexors
    ...no correlation between arch height and toe flexor strength in kids
    ...no correlation

    ...there is no correlation

    ...there is a correlation in kids :confused: :confused:
     
  18. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    Articles:
    1
    The Effect of Foot Strengthening Exercise on Dynamic Function
    of the Medial Longitudinal Arch in Runners:
    A Preliminary Report

    Jarom Bridges
    Masters thesis; Brigham Young University 2015
     
  19. Craig Payne

    Craig Payne Moderator

    Articles:
    6
    Seriously?
    Look what they found:
    They reported an increase in arch height of .33mm, but the control groups arch dropped 1.31mm! ... that increase in the strengthening group was only 1/3rd of a mm!
    The results are more likely due to the accuracy and reliability of the measurement system and are random. They did not report on the reliability of the measurements!
     
  20. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    Articles:
    1
    Therapeutic Exercise Effects on Function of the Medial Longitudinal Arch During Running: A Preliminary Study
    Jarom T. Bridges et al
    Presented at the ACSM Annual Meeting; Boston 2016

    The Effect Of An 8-week Strengthening Protocol On Intrinsic Foot Muscle Size And Strength
    Mark T. Olsen et al
    Presented at the ACSM Annual Meeting; Boston 2016
     
  21. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    Articles:
    1
    The Effect of an 8-week Arch Muscle Strengthening Protocol on Arch Height Index
    David B. Griffin et al
    Presented at the ACSM Annual Meeting; Boston 2016
     
  22. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    Articles:
    1
    Association of arch height with ankle muscle strength
    and physical performance in adult men.

    Zhao X, Tsujimoto T, Kim B, Tanaka K.
    Biol Sport. 2017;34(2):119–126.
     
  23. Craig Payne

    Craig Payne Moderator

    Articles:
    6
    added that study to my table; data pretty consistent now (even though some of it is weak)
     

    Attached Files:

  24. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    Articles:
    1
    Comparison of foot muscle morphology and foot kinematics between recreational runners with normal feet and with asymptomatic over-pronated feet
    Xianyi Zhang, Jeroen Aeles, Benedicte Vanwanseele
    Gait and Posture; Article in Press
     
  25. Craig Payne

    Craig Payne Moderator

    Articles:
    6
    Most studies show no link between muscle strength and arch height/"overpronation"
    This one show that the muscles are stronger in those with a lower arch height!
    Fan boys - please explain?
     
  26. HansMassage

    HansMassage Active Member

    I am not a fan but my explanation based on clinical experience is that when an arch is held in partial pronation to compensate for leg length discrepancy the muscles on that side are both stronger and more distressed on that side than the side holding a consistent arch.
    I am a fan of FUNctional muscles. strengthening muscles that are not functional causes pain and that is not FUN.
     
  27. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    Articles:
    1
    Association of arch height with ankle muscle strength and physical performance in adult men.
    Zhao X, Tsujimoto T, Kim B, Tanaka K
    Biol Sport. 2017 Jun;34(2):119-126. doi: 10.5114/biolsport.2017.64585
     
  28. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    Articles:
    1
    The Comparative Effectiveness of a Human Fibroblast Dermal Substitute versus a Dehydrated Human Amnion/Chorion Membrane Allograft for the Treatment of Diabetic Foot Ulcers in a Real-world Setting.
    Kraus I, Sabolinski ML, Skornicki M, Parsons NB.
    Wounds. 2017 May;29(5):125-132.
     
  29. HansMassage

    HansMassage Active Member

    " The results showed that high arches had lower ankle muscle strength while low arches exhibited greater ankle muscle strength. Arch height was negatively associated with ankle muscle strength but not related to physical performance. We suggest that the lower arch with greater ankle muscle strength may be an adaptation to weight support and shock absorption."

    I suggest that a high arch is just that and arch which has inherent strength to hold its shape. Therefore less muscle engagement is necessary to hold its shape.
    Observation of clients with leg length difference that adapt by lowering one arch and raising the other; The tibialis posterior on the low arch is more highly developed, suffers fatigue more often and cramping.
    Arch height can be improved with simple training. Shift the weight onto one foot while standing. consciously raise the arch on the foot that is partially weight bearing then shift the weight onto that foot and consciously raise the arch on the other foot. The goal is to train the muscle sequencing to form the arch before loading it instead of trying to control the pronation after the insufficient arch is loaded.
     
  30. DaVinci

    DaVinci Well-Known Member

    I see loons all the time making claims about strengthening muscles to increase arch height. Do they not read "evidence"?
     
  31. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    Articles:
    1
    Does the weakening of intrinsic foot muscles
    cause the decrease of medial longitudinal arch
    height?

    Kazunori Okamura et al
    J. Phys. Ther. Sci. 29: 1001–1005, 2017
     
  32. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    Articles:
    1
    Conference presentation: "Toe curl exercise decreased arch height"
    Source
     
  33. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    Articles:
    1
    Supporting the Medial Longitudinal Arch: A Comparison Between Intrinsic and Extrinsic Musculature
    Schaefer, James D..
    Illinois State University, Dissertations 2018. 10787573.
     
  34. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    Articles:
    1
    Morphological and mechanical properties of plantar fascia and intrinsic foot muscles in individuals with and without flat foot.
    Taş S et al
    J Orthop Surg (Hong Kong). 2018 May-Aug;26(3):2309499018802482.
     
  35. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    Articles:
    1
    Association of Foot Structure with the Strength of Muscles that Move the Ankle and Physical Performance.
    Zhao X et al
    J Foot Ankle Surg. 2018 Nov - Dec;57(6):1143-1147. doi: 10.1053/j.jfas.2018.06.002.
     
  36. NewsBot

    NewsBot The Admin that posts the news.

    Articles:
    1
    Relationship between foot morphology and toe muscle strength in female university students
    Mieko Yokozuka, Kanako Okazaki, Yuko Sakamoto, Koko Takahashi
    Journal of Physical Therapy Science 2019
     
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