To Shim or Not to Shim Part II

Check out this shot of a poster in my PT’s office:

It looked eerily like my X-ray many years ago when it was determined that my right leg was about 1/8″ shorter than my left. The whole body gets jacked, the spine even curves to compensate. Impact forces from running get transmitted along a crooked axis up my body, really causing tons of problems because the muscles and bones just aren’t lined up optimally to take the stress. Pedaling on the bike doesn’t have impact forces to deal with, but man think of the weird stresses on my muscles/joints/bones due to the fact that one foot needs to extend a tiny bit longer than the other to transmit power to the pedals!
Thankfully in my case, it was not a basic structural issue (ie. my body’s bones weren’t actually 1/8″ shorter in my right leg) and a functional issue. ART and Graston released the muscles that were shortened and/or tightening up to draw my right leg up. Then, muscle strengthening, balance training, and correcting/refining my swim/bike/run technique helped prevent it from coming back and causing injury or other problems.
All I can say is, take the time to go through treatment. Embrace the time and cost to truly fix the problem if it is functional versus structural (in which case you’ll need shims or similar). Know that you will have to break old physical movement habits and engage new ones. I guarantee you that the pain and frustration you are experiencing in your training/racing now will diminish greatly, or go away completely…

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