Shape and mobility of the mid-foot
I recently realized that I have had a blind spot—with a few dimensions—about feet.
I have high arches, and I’ve sometimes had foot pain. I’ve had a bit of plantar fasciitis, but more commonly I’ve had pain in the left mid-foot. My improved clarity came when I realized that the foot pain seemed to be coming from the joints between the metatarsals and cuneiforms, and that the pain was related to stiffness (lack of dorsiflexion) in the joints. Working on my foot to improve dorsiflexion—something I never really tried to do before—has really helped the foot feel better. I realize that I took the shape of my arches for granted, and assumed that they couldn’t change. I’ve been looking at everyone else’s feet with new eyes, and I’ve had some nice breakthroughs with clients who had limitations similar to mine. One connection I’ve made is that these stiff, high medial arches seem to drive weight into the heel.
Interestingly, arthritic changes to these joints seem to be better known in people with the opposite problem: flat feet. I don’t think I’ve seen that in my practice, but I’ll be on the lookout now.