by Dennis Denlinger
How many times have you been on your feet a lot and couldn't wait to sit down? It has happened to most of us. It could have been from blisters or...new shoes which didn't fit right or...kicking a chair when wandering around in the middle of the night or...or....
Or it could have been something which just would not let itself get fixed. It could be something which specially made shoes or pain pills just could not fix. And by the time the surgery would be finished, too much damage may have been done to ever get it right again. Hopefully it has not gone that far yet because possibly, just possibly a simpler fix is on the horizon.
Good news! A new discovery about how the foot arch works points the way to relief of a number of foot and leg pains as well as flat feet. True, it may not work for all foot or leg problems. Nothing can promise that. In fact, any one pain or problem can come from any number of causes.
However, it can be shown that upsets like certain foot or leg problems and pains can be created when the foot arch is not working right. Who knows?...that pesky pain may just respond. Nothing tried, nothing gained. Why not find out more?
Yes, the foot arch. The new discovery is that the foot arch is created using certain muscles in certain ways. The discovery comes from the direction of engineering science, not medical science. The engineering principles are taught in architecture school. The way roof arches were built in old European churches gave the first clue. Then the application of engineering theory completed the project.
Although the entire theory will not be given here, some of the background will be explained.
Even if the feet seem to have good arches, there may be something in the way they are used which causes the foot or leg pain. And if it does not hurt now, something may change in the future which could be easily fixed if one knows what follows.
Although a foot is apparently well arched, improper use of the foot can cause pain. The foot is made to hurt when not being used correctly as a warning to shape up.
Here is what happens.
A joint is where two bones meet. Ligaments hold the bones together at the joint. Remember the last time you cut a chicken up for the pot? The tough white material holding the bones together at the joints are the ligaments.
What if you had no ligaments? Just imagine sleeping and turning over several times in the night. You might wake up with several toe bones mixed in with your ribs, a knee cap in your mouth and a shoulder blade mixed up with your toes. Rather a funny picture when you think about it. Don't worry, as long as you have your ligaments it won't happen. That is a main job of the ligaments.
When you get out of bed and start putting loads on your bones and joints, you will find that the ligaments by themselves just are not strong enough to carry the load. That is why you also have muscles to hold your bones together at the joints. The muscles can carry much more load than the ligaments.
Besides holding the bones together at the joints, the muscles have a much more important job to do. They move your bones around. When you reach up to scratch your cheek, muscles in your arm move your hand. When you run, muscles in your legs move your feet. You get the idea.
Muscles do need to rest and get repaired during sleep. That is when the ligaments do their main thing. However, sometimes muscles stop doing their job when carrying a load during the day. Here is when ligaments really have an important backup job, but they don't like it. Taking over the job of muscles is too much for a ligament, and it screams (ie, hurts) in protest.
Ligaments are the backup system which holds bones together at the joints when the muscles are not working as they should.
Here is an experiment to get more understanding. Some few people have something unusual in their arm which does not let this work. Those people can try a similar experiment using another joint. Also, if overdone it may cause pain or damage. So, to take special care that no injury occurs, only do it with the permission and supervision of your health care provider. If your health care provider does not agree that it is okay for you to do this experiment, do not attempt it.
Hold your right arm out with the palm down. Relax the muscles in your right arm so that the hand flops limply down from the wrist. Now, using your left hand, push on the back of your hand, forcing your right wrist to bend more than it was meant to. If you push enough, the wrist will hurt. Don't damage your body. Only do it enough to get the idea.
When you get the idea, move your left hand away. Keep your right arm out with the palm down. Next, contract the muscles in the back of your right arm which will pull your hand up until your wrist is not bent so much.
This time, using those muscles in your right arm, Do Not Let Your Right Wrist Bend any more than it already has. Then, with your left hand, press on the back of your right hand again, trying to bend your right wrist. As long as you do not let your right wrist bend, you will find that it does NOT hurt, no matter how hard you push with your left hand. You can now relax and I will tell you the theory of what is happening.
In any well-engineered machine such as a jet plane, space shuttle or even many cars the important systems, such as brakes in cars, have back up systems which operate when the main (primary) system breaks down. When the main system has failed and the back up system starts operating, there are loud bells and bright flashing red lights to let the operator know that there is something wrong which needs to be fixed.
In the human body, when the muscles stop operating and the ligaments start carrying a heavy load across the joint between bones, pain is the loud bell and flashing light which lets the operator (you) know that something is wrong. In your wrist you already know which muscles to operate.
A similar system in your feet hurts when the foot arch muscles do not operate right. This can affect the ligaments which hold your foot bones together. It can also affect the ligaments which hold the two bones in the lower leg together as in shin splints.
All the information cannot be put into this article. There is more at the web sites and in the books: "Muscle N' Bone" and "How To Use the Foot Arch Correctly."
--- Denlinger studied engineering as part of earning an architectural degree at Carnegie-Mellon University. Later in life he made Denlinger's Discovery™ by using engineering basics to handle otherwise untreatable severe pains in his own body. Web sites for more information: http://www.NeckBackFootPain.com and http://www.FootArch.com