Massage & Bodywork

May/June 2012

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technique BODYREADING THE MERIDIANS | @WORK | ESSENTIAL SKILLS | MYOFASCIAL TECHNIQUES Interosseous Muscle Strains These Small, But Important Muscles Keep Us Walking By Ben E. Benjamin In the acute phase of the injury, the pain can be so severe that many people will have difficulty even bearing their full weight on the injured foot. When clients have a sharp pain between two or more metatarsals in the dorsal anterior foot, they are likely suffering from an interosseous muscle strain. The pain can be felt not only in the dorsal but also the plantar surface of the foot, or, in some cases, straight through the foot. These four muscles, which are engaged each time you take a step, help to stabilize the front part of the foot and prevent the toes from spreading apart when you walk. They don't seem that important to us until they start to hurt. The interosseous muscles stabilize the foot while walking or running. They abduct and help flex and stabilize the toes and feet, although abduction is less important in the mid- foot than stabilization. They also control the direction of the toes during vigorous activity, allowing the long and short flexors to perform their actions. The interosseous muscles contribute to maintaining the stability of the anterior metatarsal arch of the foot, as well as the medial and lateral longitudinal arches, due to the position of the joints between the metatarsal bones and the phalanges. Let's look at the anatomy in more detail, especially the relationship between the interosseous muscles and the metatarsal bones of the foot. ANATOMY OF THE INTEROSSEOUS MUSCLES The four interosseous muscles are situated between the five long metatarsal bones of the mid-foot. They are bipenniform (feather-shaped) muscles, arranged on each side of a tendon. Each interosseous muscle has two heads and originates 108 massage & bodywork may/june 2012

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