Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"I walk in a strange way. Should I be worried?"
hi im 15 and I have always walked in a way in which my toes hit the ground before my heel will this cause problems in later life
Thank you very much for your question. People can have different gaits depending on their anatomy and muscle tone. While most individuals will heel strike (i.e. walk in a manner that allows their heel to contact the ground before the ball of their foot), people can also lead with a toe strike. While some individuals and shoe companies suggest that a gait leading with a toe strike may help distribute load across all joints, there is no conclusive data that would suggest one gait is superior to the other. Do you experience pain when walking? Do you notice that you are limping? Do you have numbness or tingling in your lower extremities? Have you noted weakness in one leg or foot versus the other? Do you have back pain? Any of these may be a symptom that your gait is not optimal. A physical therapist or podiatrist may be able to help analyze your gait. It is not possible to receive a diagnosis without being evaluated by a physician or other qualified health professional. I suggest that you make an appointment with your primary care physician or local health center to further discuss your concerns. They may refer you to a physical therapist or a podiatrist.
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