BirthdayShoes.com Vibram Five Fingers Forum
October 01, 2014, 12:13:42 PM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?

Login with username, password and session length
News:
 
   Home   Help Search Login Register  

Tired of seeing ads? Simply become a forum member and login (membership is free!).

nanny-rosy
Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 5
  Print  
Author Topic: How to Correct a Bunion - Naturally  (Read 140337 times)
0 Members and 2 Guests are viewing this topic.
Barefoot Down Under
Newbie
*

Reputation: 1
Barefoot Down Under is a new face.
Posts: 24


View Profile
« on: November 11, 2009, 09:09:49 AM »

Hello folks,

I've spent the last year or two trying to find a natural way to correct a mild bunion on my right foot. It doesn't normally hurt unless I do a lot of walking or running, but even this pain can be bothersome. However, I'm more concerned about the fact that it upsets my balance when practising martial arts and looks ugly. Whenever I search the Internet for ways to correct a bunion that doesn't involve surgery, I almost always stumble across websites that discourage the use of shoes and promote a barefoot lifestyle. Strangely enough, I seem to have a natural inclination to want to walk around barefoot. However, this also creates an interesting problem for me.

I'm sure you would all agree with me that a person who walks barefoot most of the time has stronger bones and muscles in their feet than a person who normally wears shoes. So is it easier to correct a bunion when a person's feet are weak or when they are strong? Would walking barefoot, or in minimalist footwear, make it harder for me to realign the bones in my right foot. Or would the natural movement help to correct the deformity? Do bunions slowly disappear after many years of barefoot walking? Or do they remain just as hideous as they were to begin with? Sorry for playing the devil's advocate, but do you think it's possible that some sturdier types of footwear could be used to correct a bunion? The ones I'm thinking of are listed below:

1.   Yoga Sandals (www.yogasandals.com)
2.   Shoes worn with Correct Toes spacers (transcendbodywork.com/Store.html)
3.   Shoes containing the Barefoot Science Arch Activation Foot Strengthening System (www.barefootscience.com/us/index.php)

Do you think it would help if I wore some of these sturdier types of footwear to correct the bunion while my feet are weak, and then to start using minimalist footwear when I've gotten rid of the bunion. Of course, the only problem is that these types of footwear might not correct the bunion at all. But are they worth a shot? I'm worried that if I start wearing minimalist footwear right now, I'll jeopardise my chances of correcting the bunion in the future. What do you think?

Finally, I'd just like to ask whether you think that wearing Vibram Five Fingers would be more likely to realign the bones in my foot than going completely barefoot. Have any of you found that VFF's help to straighten out the toes? I'm also worried that if I start to wear VFF's before correcting the bunion, I'll wear a hole in the pocket of the big toe because it turns inwards. Have any of you worn a hole in one of the pockets of your VFF's because your toes were crooked? Do you think the material is strong enough to withstand constant pressure in a place it's not supposed to be applied to?

Thanks in advance for your help and guidance.

Barefoot Down Under.
Logged
BirthdayShoes.com Vibram Five Fingers Forum
« on: November 11, 2009, 09:09:49 AM »

 Logged
orlin03
Sr. Member
****

Reputation: 6
orlin03 is starting to look familiar.orlin03 is starting to look familiar.
Posts: 332



View Profile WWW
« Reply #1 on: November 11, 2009, 11:11:31 AM »

A friend of mine has a very crooked big toe, and started running in the Five Fingers. After the second day, he noticed his toe on one foot straightening out. This was probably due to the amount of force he was suddenly subjecting that toe to, as he was a very heavy heel striker and wore supportive shoes. However, he overdid it, running about 13 miles on the second day, and running 9 on the third. His foot swelled and became too painful to run; this was at the begining of October, and he is just now starting to feel better. My take on this: yes, the Five Fingers can help straighten out the toes, but take it slow!
Logged

toastergirl
Hero Member
*****

Reputation: 9
toastergirl is a regular 'round here.toastergirl is a regular 'round here.toastergirl is a regular 'round here.
Posts: 643



View Profile
« Reply #2 on: November 12, 2009, 03:25:25 PM »

I have had issues with running shoes in the past and when I wore traditional running shoes - that if I didn't have a wide enough toe box, you could see my bunions pushing through the shoe material.  I was having issues with bunions on both my big toe and pinkey toes.  Pinkey toes were typically worse and hurt a lot after high volume running weeks (like training for a Ironman triathlon....) - I was worried that I was not going to be able to complete my training.  I didn't know about barefoot running at the time so i just searced out shoes with wider toe boxes.  that worked for the time being and got me through my race.  after that point - for some strange reason naturally wanted to gravitiate towards more and more mimimlaist running shoes, going from a heavily cushiuoned trainer down to a light weight trainer with mild stability.  I was able to do this because I was working on my balance and stability in strength training and working on balancing out muscle weaknesses that made me a less efficent runner. 

I still had issues with bunions on my pinkey toes from time to time - so i invested in "yoga toes" - a toe separator to help separate toes and supposedly will help with bunions.  It did help - when I used it regularly.  Then I found out about VFF's - and got them in the beginning just for strength training - as doing that barefoot is better for your balance and joint mobility (or so I am told and from the benfits I have had, its true for me).  since June I have noticed a big change in the shape of my foot.  I slowly got into running - starting in june with some running 100-200 yds at a time on a dirt track.  In aug of this year I had a bike accident - thus laying me off from running, or much else for that matter for about 6 weeks.  when I started running again, in about late sept or so.  I started in very gradually - I had to due to my compromised fitness level from not really doing much of anyhting for 6 weeks. 

does that help??  I think that VFF's have helped my bunions - and overall has changed the shape of my whole foot for the better.  my balance is also a lot better than it was this past june since wearing my VFF's.  Now its pretty much all I wear. 
Logged

"A man can fail many times, but he isn't a failure until he begins to blame sombody else" --Pre
Barefoot Down Under
Newbie
*

Reputation: 1
Barefoot Down Under is a new face.
Posts: 24


View Profile
« Reply #3 on: November 12, 2009, 07:25:31 PM »

I also bought YogaToes several months ago, in the hope that they would straighten out my toes. However, I live such an active lifestyle that I don't think I'll receive any real benefits from them. The first problem I found was that I cannot sit still for more than a few minutes at a time. Consequently, I have this bad habit of walking around in them which you're not supposed to do. The second problem I found was that even when I do wear them, my toes tend to squish together again the moment I put them back in shoes. Naturally, I started to wonder whether there was a way I could wear toe separators will walking. It turns out there is - Yoga Sandals. However, the experiment with Yoga Sandals only lasted for several days. The strap constantly rubs against my skin, causing chafing, and the extra thongs cause immense pain between my toes.

Now I'm looking for a new way to correct bunions. One that will keep my toes separated while I am walking, but doesn't hurt my feet. Some of the ideas I'm currently considering are Vibram Five Fingers, Correct Toes separators, and the Barefoot Science Arch Activation Foot Strengthening System. While the latter does not attempt to keep the toes separated, it does improve the way the foot functions. This, of course, could help the toes to straighten. However, I really cannot see how the Barefoot Science Arch Activation Foot Strengthening System would help to get rid of my bunion any more than barefoot walking or wearing VFF's would. My guess is that the Barefoot Science Arch Activation Foot Strengthening System is really only for those who want the benefits of walking barefoot but are too self-conscious to actually do this.

As for VFF's vs. Correct Toes, I guess the big question is whether it is better to force the toes apart while they are weak, or to let them move apart gradually while they are strong. What do you guys think? Some people claim that VFF's have helped to aleviate their bunions, while others claim that they did not. So what factors allow someone to successfully correct a bunion using VFF's? Are they related to diet, posture, and gait? Or are they related to the severity of the bunion, the period of time one has had the bunion, and bone strength/density? This is just a speculative question, so please don't feel obliged to give me a scientifically proven answer. I just want some ideas as to how I could maximise my chances of correcting the bunion while wearing VFF's.

Barefoot Down Under.
Logged
BirthdayShoes.com Vibram Five Fingers Forum
« Reply #3 on: November 12, 2009, 07:25:31 PM »

 Logged
ZeitHeld
Hero Member
*****

Reputation: 14
ZeitHeld is making a name for themselves.ZeitHeld is making a name for themselves.ZeitHeld is making a name for themselves.ZeitHeld is making a name for themselves.ZeitHeld is making a name for themselves.
Posts: 945

And so Antaeus returns, wiser for the wear.


View Profile
« Reply #4 on: November 12, 2009, 07:59:00 PM »

First and foremost, as you'll find from reading this forum, we all highly recommend VFFs. Toe separation is a part of foot health, but only one. By wearing VFFs, you get all of the natural foot mechanics. Forefoot stride, working your arches, toe separation, everything.

The Barefoot Arch thing (with the long g-d name) doesn't look legit to me. Any website that you visit that brings up their product's infomercial automatically and has 5 testimonial sections is trying to gloss over something. and they just don't look like they'd work. An insole is not enough to make the dramatic shift back to barefoot health. If the problem is that your shoes are too bulky, you're not going to fix it with a magic insole.

The Correct Toe separators may be worth looking into, but only as a secondary solution. I would consider wearing them to bed. But again, it's a small part of the big picture, and I wouldn't rely on them. VFFs change the way you look at shoes so much.
Logged

twitter.com/derekofbavaria
facebook.com/derek.beyer
toastergirl
Hero Member
*****

Reputation: 9
toastergirl is a regular 'round here.toastergirl is a regular 'round here.toastergirl is a regular 'round here.
Posts: 643



View Profile
« Reply #5 on: November 13, 2009, 10:15:52 AM »

I agree ZeitHeld  - that there are other benefits to minimalist shoes other than striaghtening out your toes.  its better for your overall posture and such. 

where is that picture posted on here of the feet that are in modern shoes all the time and the one that is a person who is always barefoot??

Yes, the yoga toes are good, but yeah, my problem too was that I didn't sit still long enough to use them properly.  although, they suggest only wearing them for like 10min at a time in the beginning.  and it was true, that after about 10min or so the first few times i wore them I really was feelling it stretching out my toes and feet.  i would wear them just before going to bed at night, or a few times on a long car ride, when I was not driving.  but I think that I am getting more efficent results with my VFF's because I can wear them all the time - and not have to force myself to sit still.  Which, might not be a bad idea come to think of it - ha! as that is something that I don't often do.  Smiley
 

as for something scientific on whether or not its better to correct something when its weak rather than strong.  From what I know about the human body (I am not a doctor or anything, was pre-med in college and did a lot of work in phycical therapy, and still read a lot about health and fitness) - and from my own personal experience - its probably easier to train something when its weak - so that when it becomes stronger, it gets stronger functioning in a more healthy way - rahter than it getting stronger with bad habits or in a not healthy movement pattern, then trying to break old habits.   does that make sense?   

diet and everything else might also have something to do with how well your body adapts - eating well has a lot of far reaching effects than we can probably even begin to touch on.  the severity of the bunion is probably a factor - mine were not that severe on my big toes - on my pinky toes (they are called Tailor bunions) they were worse for some reason - and my left more so than my right.  my left one has been slower in straighetning out, but its definitely different than it was in June.  I also pretty much just wear my VFF's now - haven't worn regular shoes too much since getting my 2nd pair of VFFs - I got black classics that I can wear to work.  Other than when I have a big meeting at work I wear my black classics. 

Logged

"A man can fail many times, but he isn't a failure until he begins to blame sombody else" --Pre
iain
Sr. Member
****

Reputation: 5
iain is starting to look familiar.iain is starting to look familiar.
Posts: 430


View Profile
« Reply #6 on: November 13, 2009, 10:54:24 AM »

where is that picture posted on here of the feet that are in modern shoes all the time and the one that is a person who is always barefoot??


Logged

"Eternity is very long, especially towards the end." Woody Allen
toastergirl
Hero Member
*****

Reputation: 9
toastergirl is a regular 'round here.toastergirl is a regular 'round here.toastergirl is a regular 'round here.
Posts: 643



View Profile
« Reply #7 on: November 13, 2009, 11:07:12 AM »

thanks iain!  Smiley
Logged

"A man can fail many times, but he isn't a failure until he begins to blame sombody else" --Pre
orlin03
Sr. Member
****

Reputation: 6
orlin03 is starting to look familiar.orlin03 is starting to look familiar.
Posts: 332



View Profile WWW
« Reply #8 on: November 13, 2009, 11:10:26 AM »

Here are two photos of my foot after 6 months of running in VFFs. In one photo, my foot is relaxed with only some weight on it. In the other, it is in a stretched position, like when taking off on a fast run or on uneven surfaces. In either photo, it is easy to tell that my toes are very spread out; they were not even close to this when I first started!

<a href="http://s32.photobucket.com/albums/d43/orlin03/?action=view&current=Toes2.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://i32.photobucket.com/albums/d43/orlin03/Toes2.jpg" border="0" alt="Photobucket"></a>
<a href="http://s32.photobucket.com/albums/d43/orlin03/?action=view&current=ToesSpread2.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://i32.photobucket.com/albums/d43/orlin03/ToesSpread2.jpg" border="0" alt="Photobucket"></a>
Logged

Ardent
Hero Member
*****

Reputation: 13
Ardent is making a name for themselves.Ardent is making a name for themselves.Ardent is making a name for themselves.Ardent is making a name for themselves.Ardent is making a name for themselves.
Posts: 796



View Profile
« Reply #9 on: November 13, 2009, 01:18:55 PM »

Well done iain, that is the pic I was reffering to in the other bunion thread.
Logged

Barefoot Down Under
Newbie
*

Reputation: 1
Barefoot Down Under is a new face.
Posts: 24


View Profile
« Reply #10 on: November 13, 2009, 06:54:38 PM »

orlin 03, that's amazing!!! I've never seen a person's big toe stretch so much away from the other toes. I'd be happy if I could simply get my big toe to point straight while I'm walking, but that is incredible!!!

I've done a little bit more of my own personal research into bunion correction, and come to the following conclusions:

   1. According to the makers of the Barefoot Science Arch Activation Foot Strengthening System, the BSAAFSS is most effective when worn with minimalist shoes that have a flexible sole. This makes me a little bit suspicious, since minimalist shoes should automatically strengthen people's arches regardless of whether they use the BSAAFSS. So the BSAAFSS would really only be necessary for someone who wears shoes that have a sturdy sole. However, wearing sturdy running shoes with the BSAAFSS instead of wearing VFF's/going barefoot is akin to eating multigrain bread instead of wholemeal. I've never been able to understand the logic of removing all the goodness from bread and then trying to add it back in later on. You might as well just leave all the goodness in there to begin with. Wouldn't it be better to avoid creating a problem in the first place than to try to correct it later on? So why buy a sturdy pair of shoes that stop the feet from working properly and then try to make these shoes more flexible? You'd be much better off avoiding the problem in the first place, be buying a pair of shoes that has a flexible sole and allows the feet to move naturally.

   2. Correct Toes might be useful, but only if it were used in conjunction with foot strengthening activities. There's no point trying to separate the toes without strengthening the muscles that are needed to keep them in their new position. Otherwise, the toes will simply move back into their former position once the toe separator is removed. Similarly, one should not try to stengthen their feet without doing something to keep the toes apart. Otherwise, you'd only be giving the muscles the strength to keep their current, deformed position. However, if the feet are both strengthened and separated at the same time, they should easily keep their new alignment. Consequently, I can see several solutions to the problem:

      a. Wearing Correct Toes with minimalist footwear (such as Nike Frees or the Vivo Barefoot) and wearing them to bed
      b. Wearing Correct Toes with minimalist footwear (such as Nike Frees or the Vivo Barefoot) and NOT wearing them to bed
      c. Wearing Vibram FiveFingers / going barefoot and wearing Correct Toes in bed
      d. Wearing Vibram FiveFingers / going barefoot and NOT wearing Correct Toes in bed

One thing I should also mention is that Correct Toes don't allow the toes to move individually, so wearing them is akin to gluing your toes together. In fact, it's like wearing a cast over your toes, so it will only weaken them. This in turn will make it harder for the toes to keep their new alignment. So how do you get the benefits of wearing Correct Toes (such as better toe alignment) without the side effects (such as weak toe muscles)? By wearing them during extended periods of inactivity, such as during sleep. YogaToes are much too bulky to be worn to bed, and if you're game enough to try this, you'll wake up after a short period of time with so much pain in your toes that you'll have absoluetly no choice but to take them off. But I must say that I like toastergirl's idea of wearing Correct Toes to bed, because I doubt they'd have the same problems that YogaToes do.

I also don't think it would be a good idea to wear Correct Toes while one is active, because then the toes will not gain the strength they need to keep their new alignment. Consequently, I reckon that the best option is option c. It allows the toes to strengthen during the day by wearing VFF's/going barefoot, and gently guides them into the correct alignment while one is sleeping at night. What do you think of this plan?

Barefoot Down Under
Logged
orlin03
Sr. Member
****

Reputation: 6
orlin03 is starting to look familiar.orlin03 is starting to look familiar.
Posts: 332



View Profile WWW
« Reply #11 on: November 13, 2009, 11:40:10 PM »

I agree with option C... strengthen the feet during the day; relax them into position at night when they rebuild.
Logged

ZeitHeld
Hero Member
*****

Reputation: 14
ZeitHeld is making a name for themselves.ZeitHeld is making a name for themselves.ZeitHeld is making a name for themselves.ZeitHeld is making a name for themselves.ZeitHeld is making a name for themselves.
Posts: 945

And so Antaeus returns, wiser for the wear.


View Profile
« Reply #12 on: November 14, 2009, 03:15:10 AM »

Yeah, I'll reiterate my support for option C. Options A and B don't use the best of minimalist footwear (though I wouldn't put the Free in the same box as Vivo), and option D is doing one less thing to help the process along.
Logged

twitter.com/derekofbavaria
facebook.com/derek.beyer
Barefoot Down Under
Newbie
*

Reputation: 1
Barefoot Down Under is a new face.
Posts: 24


View Profile
« Reply #13 on: November 14, 2009, 08:23:01 AM »

Check this out - it's awesome!!!
www.flickr.com/photos/9138514@N07/3799703698

Please bear with me because I'm still trying to get over the fact that there are people out there who can actually do this, regardless of how old they are. I sure hope that child never wears shoes until it's old enough to start wearing VFF's. I'd hate to see its feet become like mine. And my bunion is far from being a worst-case scenario (thankfully!).

I must say that if VFF's really do help people to spread their toes as much as orlin03 indicates, then I stand a very good chance of at least being able to straighten out the big toe on my right foot. Unfortunately there's no guarantee that I'll be successful, but I'm certainly willing to give it a try. At the very least, it will keep my bunion from getting to the stage where it'll need its own postcode.

BTW, do you think barefoot running would be more effective at straightening out the toes than barefoot walking? I can't help wondering whether the extra movement somehow promotes greater separation between the toes.

Barefoot Down Under
Logged
toastergirl
Hero Member
*****

Reputation: 9
toastergirl is a regular 'round here.toastergirl is a regular 'round here.toastergirl is a regular 'round here.
Posts: 643



View Profile
« Reply #14 on: November 14, 2009, 09:41:32 AM »

barefootdownunder.....
 I agree with option C as well....I don't think that I suggested wearing them to sleep - I would just wear them as I was relaxing in bed before going to sleep, I would always take them off before actually going to sleep. 

In the beginning its best to start walking first for a while, letting your feet get used to being barefoot and walking first, then start running.  running is a lot "harder" on your feet - just because they have to work harder to absorb more impact and in the beginning walking is a good enough workout for your feet becuase the feet are weakened from being in shoes. 

I will take a pic of my toes as well and post them while I am spreading them.  I will try to find a pic of my feet before VFF's.  Hmmm....might have a pic of my feet duct taped at a race.  yes...they sugested using duct tape on the bottom of your feet during the swim portion of this triathlon because of the razor sharp zebra muscles that inhabit the lake where we swam.  yeah....I still got cut on my foot.  VFF's would have been great for this race....had no idea they even exsisted at that time. 
Logged

"A man can fail many times, but he isn't a failure until he begins to blame sombody else" --Pre
Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 5
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.19 | SMF © 2013, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!
anything