How important are feet for childhood sporting development?


Kristin Marvin’s excellent newsletter is focused on feet and backs this past month.

What going on this week at Making Movement Matter? 

WEBINAR-> Childhood Development: Starting from the Feet

It is free and will be on my youtube channel for a couple of weeks. Please feel free to watch it live or at your leisure.

Here is the description: A child’s foot development plays a fundamental role in their overall movement, motor control and skill development. When feet are placed in healthy environments they develop into a strong foundation for the child’s skeletal frame. This allows for the muscles and connective tissue to develop and function accordingly. In a poor environment (wrong shoes, too much sitting, lack of movement) can lead to devastating consequences for the proper development of the child. Overall body movement, shoes and skeletal alignment will be discussed. Our culture today does not take the health of feet seriously; and, this has lead to pain, injury, dis-ease at an earlier age in humans, i.e. children. We need to empower our children through this knowledge, that feet matter.

Back care for rowers 

An article was written about back care for rowers:

From me-> Sometimes articles are a little short sighted. Whether they only have a certain amount of words they can use, or the semantics aren’t clear or the message is only half spoken…. whatever the case may be I want to make sure people understand that your spine LOADS all the time. 

If you are a rower (or sit a lot in your sport or your work) have a read. Read the article.

Then, read my response: 

It’s extremely important for people to understand that the spine is meant for loading. We load our spines all day, everyday while standing, walking, running, sitting or doing whatever it is we do. That is the spine’s job!

Now, the issue is=> having proper skeletal alignment [many people don’t] so that the muscles of the spine have the forces exerted on them instead of the ligaments (bones connecting bones) of the spine. What am I saying? Well, a lot of rowers posterior tilt the pelvis (tuck their tailbones in) leading to lumbar flexion (low back forces on the ligaments!!!). OR- slouching shoulders hunching over leading to hyperkyphosis (thoracic spine overloading of those ligaments).

Once a ligament is overstretched (too much force) it will never go back to its original configuration. Ligaments do NOT have elasticity like muscles do. When you mess up your ligaments, you are obviously at a higher risk of injury. Please be mindful of your skeletal alignment!!!

Simply put: Your spine is ALWAYS loading. AND, It needs to be loaded correctly.

In addition, sitting too long is a killer. We all know that. So, yes doing shorter sets would be 100% beneficial. Our bodies can only last so long in a seated position without experiencing unhealthy effects. Move baby move.

Performance Recovery from the feet up

I am writing a foot program for athletes. In 2002 I experienced foot pain that would change my life. It was the beginning of osteoarthritis in my big right toe. I do NOT want people to experience pain like I experience everyday. I want athletes to be educated properly on foot health, shoes and self-care. It’s amazing how the foot can effect the entire body dramatically. I will let you know when it is done. It is my mission!!! 

I realize I have been on a foot fetish as of late… but this will change! If you have any questions, comments, suggestions PLEASE let me know 🙂




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