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Numbness in Feet


Do you experience numbness or burning in your foot when running?  Has it not gone away with massage/rolling out your foot or change of shoes?  It is possible you are dealing with a stability issue in your spine and hips rather than a foot or shoe issue.

For a number of reasons we need proper stability and control of our spine and hips when running.  If the stability is not there, it can develop into hip pain, knee pain, or foot and ankle pain, and causes decreased energy overall output with each step…meaning you can run further and feel less fatigued!  It is possible as well that you have the stability and control for a mile or two, but then as your body fatigues your spinal stabilizers lose their control.

Now, in regards to your feet.  If you don’t maintain a good midline position of your spine when running, several things can happen.

  1. We can get hyperextension of our lumbar spine and/or anterior tilt of the pelvis. When this happens, it puts more tension on the muscles and nerves along the backs of our legs which results in the numbness or burning in your feet.
  2. An unstable spine can cause small shifting or compression through the spine, pinching on nerves directly in the spine.
  3. Unstable hips or pelvis can cause more rotation than is ideal in our hips which translates down the leg, putting increased stress on the muscles and nerves in the lower leg and foot.

Does this sound like you?  Want more information.  Click here for a FREE report on running injuries.  Or you can click here to speak with me or schedule a Discovery Visit to find out what may be going on and how to address it.

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Comments (2)

I’m 63 years of age come the end of July. Also, I’ve been an active pickleball player for the past two years. 4-5 times per week. I usually start out feeling fine but after 2 or 3 games, about 15 minutes each my feet are very numb and tingling like crazy. I can go sit down for 5 to 10 minutes and the tingling goes away and I can play another match. But then I need to sit out after each match thereafter.
I would deeply appreciate any suggestions you may have. I have zero faith in my doctor to remedy this within the next 1000000 years. I have gone to a physical therapist once about a month back and have been doing stretching exercises without any positive results.

It sounds to me like a possible muscular endurance or instability issue with your spine, allowing you to play for a short while but then the muscles get tired and the spine becomes unstable. In these situations, you don’t need stretches, you need exercises to stabilize the spine and improve the endurance of the stabilizers. I can’t say that is 100% what is going on, but it is what first comes to mind when I read your explanation.

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