2020 ArticlesGillespie Approach–Craniosacral Fascial Therapy Articles

Toe-Walking Revisited

A former patient presented with painful feet. She recently exercised on an elliptical machine that appeared to be the cause. She had to previously stop gentle rebounding. How could these two seemingly innocuous exercises result in foot pain?

She just presented in therapy with severe plantar flexion of both feet, a position similar to a ballerina dancing on her toes. This layer of her onion came out of nowhere with no remembered trauma. I believe that since she was predisposed from birth trauma, these two exercises exacerbated her underlying foot fascial issues.

I have seen this strain before with infants and young toe-walking children. This pattern can manifest for adults deep in their therapeutic fascial onion. My causative hypothesis for these scenarios is that the feet are stuck in plantar flexion in utero.

The fascial web develops in that “new normal” fetal position, but unfortunately remembers that unphysiologic pattern over the lifetime. No other logical trauma can explain this form of strain.

Similar to the clubfoot fascial strain created in utero, this pattern needs to be checked for every newborn. It can extend throughout the fascial web creating a lifetime of issues.

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Dr. Barry Gillespie

Dr. Barry Gillespie founded Gillespie Approach–Craniosacral Fascial Therapy, which provides patients with a freely moving brain, spinal cord and fascial web, all critical to optimal health. Dr. Barry Gillespie also created the Baby Brain Score and discovered effective therapeutic techniques for newborns and infants. Read more about Dr. Barry Gillespie.

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