Updated: May 1
Facts: Most people have at least one version of a hammertoe. We could get really picky with all the types you see in the image based on which joint is hammering, instead we kinda put all those toe deformities under the umbrella term of Hammertoes. Regardless of where the joint is deformed, the goal remains the same: the toes are able to stay flat when we're walking, single limb loading, and lifting off our heel.
Those are the basics.
The reason why this is important with those 3 movements is because there is no reason for the toes to be curling downward or pointing upward if we are: walking, standing on one leg, or rising off our heel. If they are curling then we have an inefficient gait meaning we're overloading certain areas and underusing other areas.
Why the heel raise?
It's what we do when we're pushing off while walking and it's when there is the most load on the toes. It's the only thing between us and the ground in toe off of gait. When the foot is behind us and we push through the big toe, it propels the heel up via the calf muscles. If our toes are curling under us during this motion then that is an inefficient gait and we are not getting full propulsion into supination and our "Windlass Mechanism" is lacking.
Watch this quick video on how to begin correcting hammertoes.
If you need more information or have pain underneath the ball of your foot, message me or let's set up a free consult to discuss what would be the best exercises for you!
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Other necessary factors for correcting hammertoes:
Toe Spacers: Check them out here!