What Our Team Have Been Studying

calf-massagePractitioner: Tom Morgan

Title of course/Subject:  UK Lower Limb Specialists Conference 

Organiser: Health Education Seminars

Lecturers/Key note speakers: Fraser McKinney; Paul Harradine; Nick Grantham; James Moore; Claire Minshull; Lee Herrington

CALF STRAIN? 

There is a muscle in your calf that gives you around 30% of your forward propulsion when walking and running.    It also gives you over 50% of your vertical movement when reaching or jumping.  It’s called Soleus.

Leading specialists, including Fraser McKinney (Physio for WBA football team), believe problems in this muscle are massively under-diagnosed in everyone and can lead to issues elsewhere in the body such as bad backs and necks.

A soleus calf strain can be rehabilitated in many ways including using weights, squats, hopping and jumping movements.  More specific methods include balance training and modifying a cycling pedal position.

Finally, hips and ankle movement are key to getting your calf muscle improved.  Ignore these and the calf may not heal properly.

For more information or to rehab your calf strain we will be happy to talk to you further.

 

GAIT ANALYSIS

Every sports shop, clinician, podiatrist etc… seem to offer gait analysis.  I have myself studied gait analysis and I know if you put ten people in a room to assess the same person you would get ten differing opinions with ten differing treatments or recommendations.

Paul Harradine, a specialised podiatrist showed how head position, arm swing, movement of hips, knee and ankle are all altered by foot position.   He showed how we can measure some of these changes and how this can make us move and feel better.

He did warn that there is no agreed way of measuring movement (gait) and this presents a problem for clinicians.  And patients should be wary especially if their overall movement is not improved by treatment for gait problems.

Tom does have specialised training in gait analysis and is happy to discuss these issues and possible treatments.  He will also cross-refer to other specialists if there is a particular need.

 

FRONT KNEE PAIN (patello-femoral pain)

Lee Harrington, Physio, talked about front knee pain and how the latest evidence suggests that a lot of it may be caused by poor blood supply rather than over use injuries or muscle imbalances.

With more and more of us sitting for hours at a time at work and in our cars, our knees are continually flexed to 90 degrees.  In this position, our blood vessels will also be “kinked”.  If blood supply to the deep bone (subchondral) is not good for long periods of time, the bone hardens and is less shock absorbing.  This leads to poor “nutrition” to the rest of the knee and so the knee becomes weakened from the inside out.

The answer is obvious, but modern life sometimes gets in the way.  Keep moving!  For more specific recommendations or treatment Tom will be happy to advise.