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Right leg and foot pain

pdxer's picture
Last seen:
2 months 2 weeks ago
04/11/2010 - 10:07pm
Right leg and foot pain
In the past I have had problems with plantara fasciatis including pain in my hamstring and bottom. After a visit with the physical therapist, it seems that the current pain is nerve relate.  It can be sharp and shooting in the hamstring and then the heel of my foot.  Sometimes just in the heel. It seems to be aggravated by bending movements to the right. The PT has me 1.not bending over, 2.doing an exercise where I lay on the floor and arch my back and 3.another one swinging my leg off the side of a stair.  I began reading your book today and am not sure I am really on the right track.  I would like to get better as I can no longer run and at times walking is extremely painful.  I am grateful for any advice you have.
Maya's picture
Last seen:
5 years 11 months ago
09/16/2008 - 4:29pm
The following is not meant as a diagnosis, but just my guesses as to what may be happening:
It sounds like there is a possibility that you have sciatica as a result of pressure on the L5-S1 nerve root, which can lead to the sharp shooting pain in the hamstring, posterior thigh, glutes, and even sensation on the heel. (You might have plantar fasciitis in addition, of course.)

1. When you bend poorly (rounding forward), the front part of the L5-S1 disc is compressed and it can press out against the nerve roots at the back of the spine. The PT is right to tell you not to bend over how you normally do, however, I'm sure that you will encounter times when you cannot avoid bending over. The hiphinging (chapter 7) will give you a way to bend that does not threaten the L5-S1 disc and surrounding nerve roots the way that rounding forward does.

2. We never encourage arching the back. That may temporarily take some pressure off L5-S1 but it will put pressure on other discs higher up. You want to work towards having the bottom back, with a natural angle just at L5-S1 and no curve higher up (the pelvis anteverted). The Gokhale Method techniques will help you achieve this.

3. I'm not sure what this exercise is just from this brief description.

The book will likely be very helpful. Walking and Inner Corset will be helpful in getting back into running. However, I encourage you to work through the book carefully - it's important that you reestablish length and enough intervertebral space for the discs by doing some of the lengthening techniques (Stretchsitting, Stretchlying, Inner Corset) before you start reshaping and then applying these techniques to things like running.

Always listen to your body. Nothing in the book should cause more pain if done correctly, so if you experience any increased pain trying any of these techniques, reexamine your form and look back carefully at the steps and instructions.

It would be great if you could take the Gokhale Method Foundations course - you can check the website to see if there's a course offered near you.
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