Intoeing and Tripping
Kids turn their feet in for lots of reasons. Most of the time it is just a blip in their development and will resolve by itself. If however it is causing tripping, pain, or severe shoe wear patterns or if it is one sided then assessment is advised.
Bone or joint turning in can be from the hip joint, Tibia, Femur, knee, ankle, or foot. More commonly however the cause is tight or weak muscles making it appear as if the bones are twisted.
Katherine Thompson treats this with reassurance, appropriate onward referrals, footwear advice, and orthotics if indicated.
Difficulty keeping up with peers
Some children struggle to keep up with their peers in P.E. and sport and whilst this used to have a tendency to lead to “lazy” labelling it is now recognised that this struggle can be related to musculoskeletal/ orthopaedic causes that have not only a diagnosis but also a cure.
Muscle strength does not always develop evenly between the right and left legs or between the front and rear leg muscle groups. Muscle weakness can lead to early fatigue, slow running or walking, pain, and tripping and falling. The leg bones don’t always grow the way they are supposed to and children’s feet can turn in or out more than they should producing uneven muscle pull or joint pain as a result. Hypermobility (being able to move joints through more than normal range of motion) is commonly associated with foot and leg pain and pathology; these children have to work so much harder to keep all their bones and joints in alignment and so fatigue and are injured much more easily. These children can also have flat feet or rolled in ankles which makes shoe fitting tricky and is related to multiple pain symptoms in feet and legs. Orthotics and can make a difference to running speed and sporting enjoyment.