T Nation

Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome and Training?

I JUST got my wife into lifting and now a doctor (podiatrist) has told her he thinks she has tarsal tunnel syndrome. He has ordered some “nerve tests” (wife’s phrase)–I assume a NVC (nerve velocity conduction) test.

She spent a lot of time this summer gardening and digging holes by pushing her heals into hard metal shovels with flat, thin, rubber sandels on.

Anyway, when she asked him about exercising he told her “it probably doesn’t help your condition”, but that upper-body work was OK. Unfortunately, this has left her with the impression that any sort of lower body work will worsen her condition.

I need some advice here: can she train lower body if it is tarsal tunnel or plantar fasciitis without causing more damage. If she abstains from lower body work for awhile, ices down her foot, uses NSAIDS and foot rolling exercises would it be OK for her to return to squating and deadlifting if the pain is manageable.


honestly in my opinion, manageable pain is still pain and pain is your body telling you something is wrong.

I would say it better that she can return to those activities if she is pain free. however in the interim i would, stretch( plantar fascia, gastroc soleus hamstring piriformis) foam roll/lax ball from her toes all the way up to her piriformis and include the TFL, it may not be directly related but why not since you already got everything out, ice when it sore, rollin on a frozen water bottle does wonders(if using H2O freeze it vertically, also a vodka bottle holds the cold well). Dude and hey foot massages always = bonus points
and stay away from any aggravating factors(duh)

Unfortunately resting your feet and staying off of them is hard to do unless you lay in bed all day. But again this is just my opinion it is how i would manage the situation if it were my patient(i am a physical therapists assistant by trade)