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  • Duck feet ...

    Hopefully the title needs no explanation, but look at: Episode 361/365: Pathomechanics and IT Band Hell | Mobility WOD

    and a pic:

    I love MWod, and I've been aware of my own duck feet for a while, my right one in particular (I'm righty) skews more than the left. Meaning, my right foot points to the right more so than my left, which is a little straighter. I've been working on standing with my feet facing forward for a few months now, at least 4 months I've been standing at work (mostly for half the day, don't really want to stand in place all day) and I always check and reset my feet when they start going out.

    I've noticed that just about EVERYONE has duck feet, which leads me to believe it is pretty much "normal" and maybe not a deviation like Kstar (author of mwod) mostly says. Look at the pic above, per Kstar, your toes should point forward, not in a "v" like the hunter pictured above. His stance is actually quite mild compared to how other people have their feet.

    Is this something to worry about or look into? I know many squat with their toes pointing outward, and that's the only way I can ATG squats (meaning, when I point my toes foward it's much harder and my feet naturally go outward to complete the movement) My right knee caves inward if I try to keep my toes pointed forward. I have not noticed any considerable change. I think my feet still point the exact way they always have, or at least since I've been conscious of it.

    I just don't want to make damage in the long run, but I'm inclined to think I'm making a bigger deal out of this than it need be.
    Last edited by iniQuity; 01-23-2012, 08:36 AM.
    I used to seriously post here, now I prefer to troll.

  • #2
    for years my feet actually used to turn in...which was weird. it took me forever to get the straightened out, and now they're pretty good, but i do notice them pointing out just slightly from time to time. i don't know if it matters, but i've found that they stay pretty straight when i'm barefoot or in VFFs.

    i'm not sure about long term damage (i feel like we die before something like that can really catch up with us), but you've got me thinking. i think i might get checked out a bit at my next chiro appt...though consciousness of foot position will likely have me keeping them straighter. regardless, i don't think it's much to worry about. i notice that tons of people do have some turn out. just checking my feet after a tuck jump i noticed that i land in a v...which i think suggest that it is natural.
    as for squats, i think you need to have your toes pointed out. your knees should follow your toes to hinge properly, and they need to move outward from the hips. i can't imagine squatting any other way unless you're doing bulgarians or pistols, or some other one-legged movement.


    • #3
      i have noticed that a lot of really overweight people walk with their toes pointed outward, not sure if there is a correlation though

      im somewhat pigeon toed myself, my toes point inward when i walk slightly
      Primal Chaos
      37yo 6'5"
      6-19-2011 393lbs 60" waist
      current 338lbs 49" waist
      goal 240lbs 35" waist


      • #4
        My feet point so far outward that it causes problems with my stance in martial arts. Tried changing it a bit, but it would hurt to force my feet straight. Eventually it got better. Now I can straighten them out just fine, but I feel very off-balance doing it.


        • #5
          The more outturned your feet end up, the less your feet/toe/calf muscles have to work (try it). It also alters your posture a bit and changes the stability muscles needed to stay standing up. This reduction in muscle exertion is most likely the reason you see so many out of shape people with duck feet. As my gait finally started to change from switching to minimalist shoes I noticed that when I walked less duck-feeted that I did have to engage more muscles (especially to retain my normally fast gait) but this change also drastically reduced the amount of shock I would take from walking around.
          "You can demonstrate the purpose and limits of human digestion with a simple experiment: eat a steak with some whole corn kernels, and see what comes out the other end. It won’t be the steak."


          • #6
            My feet turn outward, but that's because I have a lot of natural turn out and then years of ballet cemented it. It's not just my feet - it's from my hips down. It's something I consciously have to work at correcting, at least so I don't stress my knees too much. As a trade off, at least I have great posture and crazy strong thighs from all those pliés!


            • #7
              I was born with congenital hip dysplasia. It wasn't discovered until I started walking and my parents noticed one leg was turned out. I was told I had to wear a pillow splint. My right leg is still turned out more than my left. If I straighten my right foot my knee turns in.


              • #8
                My feet turn out significantly, probably thirty degrees or more. If I stand feet together and straight forward my knees turn inwards and at least an inch or so apart. I have tried keeping my feet straighter but I find it puts to much stress on my knees.


                • #9
                  I've been working on exactly the same thing! Duck feet makes an enormous difference to the position of the pelvis, however you have to have good hip mobility in particular the external and internal rotators otherwise your leg feels as if there is resistance when pointing forward. I resecntly changed to a standing desk and it is incredible the difference having you feet forward makes to overall comfort however the problem at least in my case is not the feet but up at the hip joint.

                  In particular tight muscles in the groin region of the thigh, I have a rumble roller but this is one spot that is very difficult to get at so I got a hockey ball and straddled one of the chairs in the living room that has a wide back with a 'shelf' at the top then went to work with the hockey ball on the inside of the thigh searching for knots and digging in deep trying to release the internal rotators. This made an enormous difference to the duck feet but I've still got lots of work to do.

                  Kelly also discusses the problem here


                  • #10
                    Hmmm... I could swear Weston A. Price said something about this, but now I can't find it anywhere.
                    I remember it because it made me think "HA! My mom always makes fun of us kids because we have duck feet; turns out it's HER fault! Funny world!"

                    Where I grew up I never really saw people with duck feet; so I was very self-conscious about it.
                    My smartphone makes me about $100 per month
                    Updating my journal again after a 2 year break.


                    • #11
                      -Yeah...I got duck feet too. Especially my righty. I have noticed that persons with more flat feet have more of a problem with this. A person with a nice arch is less likely to have problems with their feet spreading out, and pointing in all feet are almost flat which makes it harder to run, causes problems in general, and is harder on the knees over time...not to mention looking pretty funny. They are not completly flat. I was always so jealous of people with nice arches in their feet. Makes me feel STUPID! AND, makes me feel like I probably LOOK stupid. Like a stupid duck. LOL! Yeah, I'll admit it, I'm a foot you have big flat duck feet. I call them chicken fer me. A good pedicure's a girl thing.
                      Last edited by Jeannie_5; 02-01-2012, 02:02 PM.


                      • #12
                        I tink one possible reason for the duck feet is due to shoulder positioning. My left shoulder rests slightly forward of my right one. This unbalances the body and I think might result in the more pronounced duck foot on my right hand side.. maybe.


                        • #13
                          When I was growing up it was easy to tell the town kids from the farm kids. The farm kids had feet that pointed straight ahead and the city kids feet pointed out to each side.
                          Try walking in tough un even terrain with duck feet then do it with feet pointed straihgt - much easier with feet straight.