Biomechanics/Gait Assessment

Whether you’re an athlete or not, heel, foot, hip, knee and back pain can all be caused by problems with the way your feet are working. Insoles/orthotics, kinesiology taping or even just focused stretching can help to allow your body to function in a way that prevents pain and potential further damage.

What does a biomechanical assessment involve?

A biomechanical assessment involves an examination of the lower limbs, looking at their structure, alignment, strengths and weaknesses. The foot is a complex structure of 28 different bones, 214 ligaments and 38 muscles, bearing our body weight as we walk every day. The examination is not focused simply upon the foot but includes the pelvis, legs and knees, assessing the relationship between them. It is important to examine the lower limbs as a whole because they are closely connected and pain in one area can be due to a weakness or structural problem in another area.

What are the benefits of a biomechanical assessment?

A biomechanical assessment is very beneficial if you are experiencing pain in your feet or lower limbs but no cause has been established. A biomechanical assessment is the starting point for understanding the cause of your problem, what treatment is needed or whether further investigations are necessary.

What happens during a biomechanical assessment?

We start by taking a full medical history. You will then be asked to lie on a couch while we examine the joint range of motion of your hips, knees and feet. Your muscle strength and weakness will also be assessed and we will look for any signs of leg length discrepancy. We will examine the structure of your foot, looking at the relationship between the forefoot and rear foot. While you stand in a relaxed stance, the alignment of your feet and relationship to the lower legs will be assessed. You will also be asked to walk, in order for us to see how your hips, knees and feet are working while moving.

After the assessment

There are many different types of recommended treatments following a biomechanical assessment, depending upon your results. These range from stretches, muscle strengthening exercises to changes to footwear and/or insoles. If the podiatrist believes that your mechanics could be contributing to your injury or pain, insoles or custom made orthotics will be prescribed.

Kinesiology Taping

Kinesiology taping is the use of an elasticated tape to help to address pain and/or swelling. It is useful in treating knee pain, leg pain, foot pain, plantar fasciitis and oedema/swelling, to name but a few! The tape is waterproof and can stay in place for up to 5 days. If you find it helpful, we can show you how to self-tape your condition.

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