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odd question on foot stance

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so hoping some movement, biomechanical people might have some clue on this. physios have not been super helpful.


for years i have walked with my toes quite out, and same when i squat.


because of the toes quite out (more so on one side than the other) i lose some strength in the squat.

i am not able to squat anywhere near depth with toes pointing forward, as my knees come in.


i want to mechanically improve my hip/knee posture so my toes are generally a bit more forward.


anyone have experience with this? root cause/corrective shit i can do to get better?

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Why do you have to squat with toes forward ?


Having your feet outwards just means your hips are naturally externally rotated so if that's your comfortable position to squat with then do it.


Your external rotators are probably a lot tighter and stronger than your internal rotators. So first point of call would be to stretch and mobilise your external rotators (Glute Med, loosen up your IT Band) and then strengthen your internal rotators and stretch them at same time (Adductors, loosen up your VMO with roller).


But in the grand scheme of things, everyone has a different squat stance and best position, same as bench grip, same as deadlift stance etc. Obviously balancing mobility and strength, with optimal leverage opportunities is the goal but there are limits to what each person's body can achieve and sometimes you have to just take the message your body is sending you.


Just for extreme examples, take Marisa Inda, squats with feet slightly internally rotated and really close stance, then say Stan Efferding, with massive external rotation and wide stance.

They're total opposite ends of the spectrum, but both near the best if not the best in their field, and we all fall in there somewhere.

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There are several factors that can have an influence on feet positioning. 


From the top of my head:


(1) Muscular tone as mentioned above.

(2) Femoral retroversion.

(3) Tibial torsion. 

(4) Pelvic torsion. (Secondary  to leg length difference as in true leg length or ... reminiscence of a previous injury that caused a functional adaptation - in this case you would turn your feet out on the shorter side to compensate for the leg length difference. When you turn your feet out, you unwind the ligaments around / between your femur and hip and you end up "lengthening your leg". The way that the ligaments originate and attach are in a way that allows them to lengten - get slack in a way when you turn your leg /toes out - and tighten when you turn it in - like being pigeon toed  - Your body does this in order to compensate for either true or the functional leg length differences if or when they exist - IN ORDER to KEEP YOUR HIPS - SPINE - EYES in level. )


Generally as far as unilateral imbalances goes I would be more likely to put money on (without examining it) on number ...


(1) if you played a unilateral sport for any significant time or your posture that you sustain in your work predisposes you to this (hard to think an occupation that would do this right now....eg: something physical that gets you to use one of your side significantly more than the other)

(4) If you had any lower-back hip issues in the past. 




Without having examined you I have my money on pelvic rotation. It will change the length - tension relationship of the glutes and i often find that my patients complain about their knees dropping in or finding it hard to maintain proper knee positioning during squats.... etc. 


As far as the physio not picking up on these... you need to find someone who does.  This is a complicated subject but not rocket science and someone could look at the above mentioned things and eliminate them or further investigate them as needed. 


Sorry ... This is a really big topic and I don't feel like typing an essay. 

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A few years ago my left foot would flare out much more than my right when I was standing relaxed.


i actually totally forgot about that.  Old front on squat vids would show me slightly twisting up out of the hole. Left hip was always tighter, and generally now is still the first one to "blow out" when I get hip troubles. 


I just stretched more. (Was doing f*ck all at the time)



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