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Steven Low 11-18-2010 12:52 PM

Re: Possible cause for foot turned outwards (Steven Low please read).
It's probably a lot of everything.

Do internal rotation stretch: wfs

Stretches external rotators like piriformis a bit better than the classic piriformis stretch

Leg nerve glides would be good as well

and of course the tennis/lacross/etc. balls

Arturo Garcia 11-18-2010 01:41 PM

Re: Possible cause for foot turned outwards (Steven Low please read).
That stretch makes more sense. And that's the thing: I don't understand why all the piriformis stretches I have ever found, have you externally rotating the leg... what?? It just doesn't make sense to me.

I tried some internal rotation exercises I made up myself yesterday and today I'm a bit sore in what seems like the TFL.

Steven Low 11-19-2010 08:51 AM

Re: Possible cause for foot turned outwards (Steven Low please read).
I agree. You do stretch the glutes/piriforis with the external rotation just becauseyou're putting your leg into so much flexion...... but it doesn't target it IMO as well as the internal rotation stretch

Arturo Garcia 11-22-2010 07:32 AM

Re: Possible cause for foot turned outwards (Steven Low please read).
I have been tennis balling what I think is my piriformis, and unless I'm fooling myself, this causes an almost instant improvement in the hamstring pain.

I have also come to the conclusion that it's a nerve thing, because of these two reasons: 1. The TENS unit caused a feeling like an electric shock at some points, and 2. I can't even locate the pain with my fingers by touching my hamstrings, anywhere! the darn pain is just "there" with certain motions and stretches of that muscle/leg. So I am almost sure it's a case of a "compressed nerve".

Could a compressed nerve be the cause of some of the things I'm experiencing? On my right side, my VMO and hamstrings are a bit smaller/weaker despite tons of unilateral work even done exclusively for months. Could there be less blood flow or whatever due to a compressed nerve? ... Also I still have a weak QL on the right side, I had to change things to notice this: During laying side leg lifts, as in to work the Glute Med., I inevitably use the lower leg a little bit to push the floor, which assists the movement. But if I lift BOTH legs off the floor while laying on my side... the lower leg with adduction and then the upper leg with abduction, I feel a tremendous "strain-like" sensation in the right QL. This does not happen in the left side. This right QL is that has given up on me during some WODs in the past, where stuff like walking lunges or single leg hip extensions were involved. I am thinking it's both tight and weak, if that can be possible. Heck, I wonder if that could be compressing a nerve too, OR, if just like the VMO and hamstring, it's a side effect of the compressed nerve in the piriformis.

Man, every day I want to fly to the best specialist in the world and just say "please fix me Doctor, I've been at this for years now... if I could just be told what to do I'd do it, every day, multiple times a day, for however long it takes...". At times like this it would be good to be a millionaire. :D

Arturo Garcia 11-22-2010 09:02 AM

Re: Possible cause for foot turned outwards (Steven Low please read).
The more I research, the more I'm believing this is what I have. Two new things: pirifirmis syndrome seems to cause pain only in the leg and not in the back, which is exactly what I have. Also did I mention I had an MRI done which showed no discs displaced or anything? So no, no pinched nerve in the lumbar spine, I guess, at least not by discs.

One more thing: Another article said this:

The researchers state that other physical therapy modalities, including heat therapy, cold therapy and ultrasound, may also benefit the patient with piriformis syndrome, and that the ultimate goal of physical therapy for piriformis syndrome is to "eliminate symptoms through a systematic program designed to increase the range of motion of the surrounding muscle groups and joints, as well as to increase the supporting strength of these muscle groups." The researchers note that strengthening the hip adductor muscles has also been shown to be helpful for patients with piriformis syndrome.
Yep, this speaks to me directly as well. The physiatritian that saw me and told me to get the MRI noticed I had smaller adductors on this right leg. I actually know they are weaker on the right leg. Am I doing something about that? NO.... very dumb of me.

Today, monday, I am starting two new techniques to attack the problem. Well, three if you count the tennis ball at least 3 times a day, but I started that 2 days ago.

1. I am going to do a side plank on the left side, but holding just with the top leg (right leg) so strengthen the right adductor muscle group. I'm tired of wasting time so I'm only gonna do this on the weaker side. I suspect I'll be limited by the adductors and not the left oblique muscles so I wont worry about growing imbalances in the core muscles by only doing one side. If anything I'll be more balanced since I'll do the weaker side only.

2. Then I'll lay on that same side (left), but not in my forearm, just completely laying and I'll lift both legs at the same time, although sepparated a little bit, since this seems to target my QL muscle better than anything else. Alternatively, I could instead do a Right side-plank with the legs sepparated (upper leg, in this case left, up in the air), as this also stresses my right QL big time. I think the only reason I could reach 1:45 in the regular side planks is because both legs together are strong enough, and when I do them on my right side, the stronger left leg helps with it's adductors. But if I put them appart and only use the bottom right leg (putting much more stress on the right Gmed and QL), I suspect I wont last very long. I will try this shortly in fact and report back in a few hours.

This I will also do just on the weaker side as I have no interest to keep strengthening the left QL or left GMed.

I am hoping that this, together with the massages, proves to help over the next few weeks. I know it's not gonna be an instant thing so we'll see.

Arturo Garcia 11-26-2010 12:25 PM

Re: Possible cause for foot turned outwards (Steven Low please read).
I got a 2 minute plank yesterday for the first time, finally. Very tough. I completed 5:00 minutes total in 6:20, which means I took eight 10-second breaks. Been doing those planks I mentioned to target the right adductors, and the other to target the right QL. And been rolling the piriformis with a tougher ball that I found, it's rubber but nearly the same as a solid ball. It hurts to roll that muscle, and it's still tender even if I've been rolling it for a week, about 3x/day for maybe 2-3 minutes.

Seth Hollen 11-27-2010 01:25 AM

Re: Possible cause for foot turned outwards (Steven Low please read).
My left foot used to turn out. Trainers told me it meant my left leg/hammy/etc was weak. nothing seemed to help it and I didn't care that much.

I stated going to the chiropractor. Months later I realized my left foot is a perfect mirror image of my right.
everything seemed to fall into place once I got my Atlas adjusted and my back in alignment.

Arturo Garcia 11-27-2010 10:12 AM

Re: Possible cause for foot turned outwards (Steven Low please read).
Seth, it's not the external rotation that bothers me so much, I could live with that if it were the only problem. It's the pain along the length of my hamstring muscle that bothers me! And I cannot find this pain by touching the hamstring.. it's so weird. I just feel it "there" after long periods of sitting. It's getting VERY annoying.

Arturo Garcia 12-22-2010 02:40 PM

Re: Possible cause for foot turned outwards (Steven Low please read).
Just an update.

About a week ago I did a short wod that included hip extensions, first time doing those for a long while. Hammies were trashed for days, the left one more than the right, but both healed up fine, without the huge pain in the right. But I noticed the left hammie got more sore and took maybe an extra day to fully recover.

On saturday I did a scaled Fran of some sorts. I started doing WODS again for the first time in a long while. My thighs got trashed, but mostly the left one.

Yesterday I did a wod with weighed lunges and DB swings (53# dumbell for both, just one DB on the lunges). Today only glutes are sore, and the low back just a tiny little bit. Hamstrings feel fine, maybe very minimal soreness. Left glute might be a little more sore than the right, but only by a little bit.

I had a massage today and the lady said my left thigh was much more "loaded" than the right.

It all adds up to the same thing: My left leg is still doing more work. Why? No idea. BUT... I haven't got the hamstring pain from working out. I've been doing Deadlifts once a week, approaching former maxes soon, and it's not sore.

After about 2 weeks of daily rolling my piriformis, it's not totally pain-free and rolling it feels like a waste of time now, even with the hard ball. So I'm only rolling 1x/day. I think this helped, somehow.

I think recently I discovered I have a tight psoas or rectus femoris or both, on the left, stronger side. Maybe this is why I got injured under the left hip flexor bone from Squats a few months ago.

Arturo Garcia 01-14-2011 02:42 PM

Re: Possible cause for foot turned outwards (Steven Low please read).
I think now I have discovered I have a tight psoas in my weaker right side, maybe both sides.

I have done lots of the kneeling hip flexor stretches in the past, but probably always let my lower back arch too much.

Lately I've felt a mild pain deep in my right lower abs, that stretches down all the way to what feels like my right groin? Like it's located very deep inside... heck, it almost feels like my right testicle. (I know it sounds odd).

I found a "standing" psoas stretch and I did it, focusing very hard on flexing the glute to keep my pelvis from arching, and this stretch mimics the little pain I've been feeling on this right side. If I contract the abs and try to touch it, I can't find it (the pain). But if I relax and dig deep enough, I sometimes find it. Also this standing psoas stretch sometimes gives me a very quick (1 second) lower back pain, usually when I release the tension from doing it.

I just tested the single leg bridge and noticed there is more difference when I do them with the free leg tucked in. Still a little difference when doing them with the free leg straight, but only a difference in feel, but I get the same height above the floor. With the free leg tucked, I think I can't raise as high with my right leg. I wonder if this means tight psoas as well.

I think I saw improvement ever since I got rid of the trigger point in the piriformis (or so I think, as it doesn't hurt anymore despite rolling with a hard ball and putting all the weight on that place). But something else is still wrong. I think this mild pain deep inside my right low abs/groin started after doing the standing stretch.... but I can't be sure as I've been doing that stretch on rather random times, not planned.

Just thought I'd share this. A guy called Sam Visnic has some very informative articles and videos on the psoas and pelvic-related stuff. I got the standing stretch from one of his articles. I think he's a CHEK practitioner.

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