Turf Toe - Prevention

What measures have you taken to prevent turf toe?

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Is it possible to prevent turf toe?

The turf toe injury often occurs as a result or combination of fatigue, muscle imbalance, or stress on a body part at an inopportune moment. Appropriate workloads for the stage of training also help prevent injuries. Injury can be prevented through proper preparation for sports participation.

A combination of flexibility, strength, fitness, and dynamic stability may help to prevent injury to the big toe. Appropriate muscle strengthening, cardiovascular conditioning, flexibility, balance, core strength, and posture are major factors in both prevention and prevention of reinjury. Flexibility or range of motion of the toe joints may be indicators of injury. Flexibility is determined by the amount the toe can be flexed actively and passively. Greater flexibility of the foot and ankle lessen the chance of injury. There is no particular exercise or stretch that will prevent the injury.

Strength also plays a role. The stronger the body the less susceptible to injury it becomes. One of the keys is that both the muscle that moves the body part through that range of motion and the opposing muscle must also be strong. A decreased range of motion may predispose the joint to injury. Meanwhile, hydration keeps the tissue supple and the muscle working correctly. Unfortunately, there is no magic cure for prevention of turf toe besides developing the components needed for safe participation in sport.

The basic guideline to prevent injuries is to determine if one is in good health by having a physical exam to evaluate cardiovascular function and the possibility of disease or any other general medical problems. Before beginning activities, diseases such as gout, diabetes, certain types of arthritis, and neuropathies should be treated. Shoes and socks appropriate to one's activity will also be a deterrent to injury, as proper fitting footwear can help minimize the effect of bad biomechanics.

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