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  • What's up, guys?

  • Jeff Cavaliere, ATHLEANX.COM.

  • If you've got flat feet and you're working out, then this is one video that you can't

  • miss.

  • Today I'm going to show you 5 ways that flat feet are flat out f***ing you up in your workouts.

  • And I'm going to explain each one of them to you today.

  • I'm going to have Raymond show you on his own body why that is.

  • And most importantly, I'm going to show you 2 ways that you can try to start fixing it

  • yourself.

  • Alright, so we've got a big video here, an important video.

  • Raymond got dressed up for it.

  • That just shows you how important this really is.

  • Especially if you've got flat feet.

  • As I said, there are 5 ways that it is really really effecting your workouts.

  • And I'm going to start by showing you down at the ground exactly what's going on with

  • our feet.

  • And then you can start to understand why it's so bad and what it's implications are for

  • your workouts.

  • Alright.

  • So, let's take a look at these feet and see what I'm talking about when I say flat feet.

  • Again, you know if you have them what's going on.

  • But for those that don't, this is what's important.

  • You're supposed to have spacing here on the inside of your foot.

  • You're supposed to have a natural arch, ok, some room in here to actually get, I don't

  • know, even a pen or something on the ground

  • that you can still stand over and not squoosh it to the ground.

  • Here, you can see that that would be impossible.

  • There's absolutely no space here for my hand.

  • That is an absence of an arch.

  • Now, there's a lot of things that can cause this, guys.

  • There can be congenital/inherited things.

  • There can be just general laxity.

  • There could be dysfunctions of the muscles themselves.

  • There's not really a real definitive cause but when you have them, you've got to do something

  • about treating them.

  • So, I'm going to get into the exact ways that this is going to cause a problem and then

  • show you how to, most importantly, try to combat this and fix this yourself.

  • Ok, first up, and a real big one here, especially if you guys are squatting at all, you're going

  • to have a real hard time maintaining proper squat mechanics

  • if you're squatting with uncorrected flat feet.

  • The reason being is, all you have to do is look at what happens on the ground.

  • I talk about it all the time, guys.

  • It's a chain reaction.

  • Everything starts from the ground up.

  • You can see that on this side here, that when the foot has an arch,

  • it allows the ankle, knee, and hip to stay in alignment because that arch elevates the

  • foot just enough to keep that tibia right here in line with the knee,

  • right here in line with the hip, ok.

  • So, everything can kind of move in line the way it's supposed to.

  • This is a little bit exaggerated here, but you can see down at the ground, when the arch

  • is collapsed,

  • what happens is, the heel kicks out to the side here, and it brings the tibia and it

  • rotates it inward.

  • As soon as you do this, you're obviously causing a torque right here at the knee because this

  • inward rotation here at the tibia causes this torquing.

  • So, you're probably going to have some knee pain.

  • We'll talk about that again in a little while, but it also completely misaligns this track,

  • ok.

  • The track is now off-track, as we say, and I've said before, the patella runs on a track.

  • It should run nice and straight up here like this.

  • Here it obviously is not.

  • You're going to have some knee issues.

  • You're then going to have implications up here at the hip.

  • You're not going to be able to really keep your knees out the way you should during a

  • squat because it's already internally rotated and caving in this way.

  • You could get some ligament stress on the inside of the knee, and then up here at your

  • back.

  • Obviously if you're having hip issues, you're going to get compensations at your back and

  • that can cause a whole host of issues too.

  • So, we want to make sure that if we're going to be squatting, we've got to do something

  • about these flat feet.

  • Ok.

  • Number 2.

  • You're going to get knee stress and even hip stress, really, for that matter, and back

  • stress with jumping if you don't have a good solid arch.

  • Why?

  • Because this arch down here allows for an eccentric loading of the foot to allow you

  • to actually absorb the landing.

  • Think about it.

  • Even in your quads when you do a jump, and you jump and you land.

  • If you jump and you land with straight legs, you have no absorption of that landing.

  • But if you allow your knees to bend into a squat, you let the quads take on the eccentric

  • loading so you can soften the landing.

  • The same thing happens down here at the foot.

  • If you have a nice arch here, when you land, you absorb it through this excursion from

  • up top, down to a flat foot.

  • If you look at it over here, this person has jumping and landing, they've got no room,

  • right?

  • They're landing flat every single time.

  • There is no eccentric slowing down or loading of that foot to take away some of the stress

  • that gets thrown up into the knee, and then up into the hip and obviously into the low

  • back.

  • So, think about it.

  • Box Jumps, Jumping Jacks, Jump Rope, all the things that you could be doing, anything that

  • you're doing where you have to be jumping.

  • Even explosive lifts like Hang Cleans, if you're not really absorbing down here at the

  • foot, then you're really sending all that shock, it's got to go somewhere, guys.

  • You're sending all that shock up into the knee, up into the hip, and into the back.

  • Ok.

  • So, now listen up all you running athletes.

  • If you have flat feet, you're going to have a hard time developing adequate running power

  • and speed.

  • The reason being is there's 2 main functions of the feet.

  • The first one we talked about already.

  • It has to be able to adapt to the surface that you step on.

  • So, when you put your foot down, because the arch is there, it allows you to eccentrically

  • adapt to that surface.

  • What happens is the midfoot joints here loosen up, allow you to sort of adapt to whatever

  • the shape and surface is that you're standing on,

  • but the second main function of the foot is, it must be able to become a rigid lever.

  • It has to be a rigid level, one that you can propel your body off of as you run.

  • So, as the foot goes back into swing phase and you're going to now push off to allow

  • yourself to then take your next step,

  • you have to have an ability to lock up this mid-joint so you go into plantar flexion.

  • You push off your calf, right?

  • You get into plantar flexion.

  • All these joints in here lock up and now become a real rigid lever.

  • Literally, they functionally become rigid, mechanically so you can push off with that.

  • Well, someone that has a flat foot, they're really doing a much better job of adapting

  • to the surface, but they do a really poor job of pushing off behind for any power or

  • strength.

  • So, if you've got flat feet, good luck trying to generate as much power as somebody that

  • doesn't have it.

  • Likely, and especially in sprinting where every tenth of a second matters, you're likely

  • going to have a hard time keeping up.

  • Ok, the next issue that we run into is a big issue I've talked about many times on our

  • channel here, glute amnesia, and how that impacts a lot of the things that we do.

  • Basically, any lower body exercise, because you want in a perfect world, the glutes to

  • be working with the hamstrings, alright.

  • If they go to sleep and if they have amnesia and they're not working as well as they should,

  • you put a lot more stress on the hamstring than it should have

  • because it really wants to work in concert with the glutes together.

  • So, how do we do that?

  • What's causing it?

  • Well, you've got to go back again to the original thing, as I said.

  • When the foot collapses, then the tibia collapses as well, when that happens, the knee kicks

  • in.

  • You get torque on the knee.

  • The hip becomes internally rotated.

  • So now when the hip is internally rotated here, what happens?

  • The muscles that externally rotate the hips, especially the glute medius kind of go on

  • constant stretch and a long stretch,

  • and they become weak.

  • So, you get long, stretched out glute medius they get weak.

  • As soon as those become weak, as I've said,

  • now you've taken out a huge chunk of muscle who's real main function is to assist in all

  • of your lower body strengthening and power and function.

  • Once that goes to sleep, you're putting a hell of a lot of stress on muscles that aren't

  • really allowed to, or strong enough to really take on that role of two

  • and they wind up getting hurt so you can get hamstring injuries.

  • You can get, again, back issues because again the muscles above and below,

  • the non-functioning muscles usually going to wind up having an issue.

  • So, glute amnesia, a bad thing,

  • but it's really starting all the way down here at the foot because of what's going on

  • with that arch.

  • Finally, we've got the other issues that you see.

  • Again, I've already talked about a whole bunch, but patellar tendonitis and plantar fasciitis.

  • Two big things that wind up usually following in sequence with somebody that's got chronically

  • flat feet.

  • Why?

  • Because you can see that if this foot collapses like this one over here is, if it collapses

  • down to the ground,

  • you've got constant tension stress on the plantar fascia underneath your foot.

  • If that's the case, you get just this constant pulling.

  • It's not really an inflammatory condition.

  • It's actually just a chronic degeneration of that tendon because of the pulling on both

  • sides of its attachments.

  • So, that's one major issue.

  • The second is patellar tendonitis, and we talked about his in our knee video.

  • It's this whole train and track discussion that we've had.

  • If you want the train which is the patella, to ride up and down on that track correctly,

  • then you better make sure you keep that track straight.

  • If you're going to start bending and warping the track this way, that's going to happen

  • if you screw something up down at the ground here,

  • then that patella is not going to have a real easy time following up and down smoothly on

  • here.

  • You're going to get patellar issues, tracking issues,

  • which are going to lead to a lot of pain in your patellar tendon which can feel like little

  • knives going in every single time you squat.

  • Certainly something that you don't want.

  • So, most importantly, those are 5 big ways that these are screwing with your workouts,

  • but I want to try to show you a couple things that you might be able to do

  • to strengthen those muscles down here at the foot to get them a little bit more well-equipped

  • to handle the stresses from above.

  • Alright, so here's the 2 areas that we want to attack if you want to start trying to strengthen

  • the muscles in here.

  • Again, people might run and get orthotics, and that's a decent way to try to act as a

  • crutch, but it's not doing anything to actually fix the problem.

  • It's just filling in the gap here that you don't have in terms of your arch.

  • So, if we want to really try to get at this,

  • you want to look at the muscles that might potentially be weak that are causing what's

  • going on.

  • The first thing I want to be able to do is start strengthening the muscles actually in

  • your big toe.

  • Believe it or not, this big toe here can have a lot of force and power.

  • And assist you in lifting up your arch by being able to flex against the force of gravity

  • and against your own weight.

  • So, I'm going to show you an exercise that will target that and allow you to start doing

  • that.

  • Secondly, we want to start working on a muscles called the posterior tibialis, right.

  • So what I do is I attached this rubber band here to sort of see its function.

  • And basically it originates here on your tibia, it comes down and attaches right here in our

  • midfoot.

  • So, you can see that this is literally, when this contracts it's holding up the arch.

  • If I were to take this off, you see the arch collapses.

  • So what happens is, a lot of times people have a weakness in this muscle.

  • They don't have enough strength in this muscle to actually hold up and support the arch.

  • So, if there's a way that we can actually strengthen this posterior tibialis, that would

  • be awesome because we can get this to them hook on again, and it will allow it.

  • Not hook on.

  • It's always attached, but you know, the function of being able to lift this arch by making

  • it a lot more strong and be able to pull that up.

  • Alright, so first we want to cover that exercise that will help us to get those intrinsic muscles

  • underneath our toes to try to get a little bit stronger.

  • So all I have here, and all you'll need, is a quarter.

  • And you want to take, again, and excuse my ugly feet here.

  • My ugly flat feet.

  • They're like flippers.

  • You want to take the big bone right here at the base of your toe and step on the quarter

  • right at that spot, ok.

  • So right there.

  • Now, all you're trying to do here is push as hard as you can into the ground with the

  • front of your toes here especially your big toe,

  • and you want to try to do that, and what you're doing is, you're trying to lift up the arch.

  • Again, I've got incredibly flat feet.

  • They basically lay down there as usual.

  • But if I can actually press, you can see I can create a little bit of an arch.

  • You just want to make sure that you stay in contact with that quarter the entire time

  • because what you'll likely want to do is start rolling off.

  • And if you start rolling off, it either lifts up with you or you lift off the quarter, that's

  • not what you want, ok.

  • So, you want to just get in here in this position again.

  • The quarter's under that toe.

  • You push the toes into the ground.

  • And you're trying to keep, again, your heel stays on the ground, and you're trying to

  • keep that arch as engaged