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Painful Big Toe Joint (Hallux Limitus/Rigidus)

The big toe joint (called the metatarsophalangeal joint or MPT joint) is an important joint that needs to be able to bend for the foot to work as efficiently as it should. Sometimes, for a variety of reasons, the joint can become stiff and make walking painful at this area – and sometimes it can become so bad that it results in a complete loss of movement.

Footwear is important in these cases. If the joint cannot bend, then a shoe with a stiff sole – or rocker sole like the examples pictured below-  can be useful. A shoe with a decent heel height may make symptoms worse as this will ask more of the joint and so may be best avoided – or at least limited. It is also important to point out that the make and price of the shoe/trainer is not important, as long as it is fit for purpose. 

Photo of training shoe
Photo of training shoe

If you do not see any sign of improvement after 6 – 8 weeks of following the advice and exercises in this leaflet, please phone 0141 347 8909 to see a healthcare professional who can assess your foot and potentially recommend further treatment.

Information leaflets