Background: Although there is no ideal foot type for classical dancers, second-toe length seems to be a factor in the etiology of foot disorders in ballet dancers.
Methods: We investigated the relationship between second-toe length and foot disorders in 30 ballet dance students and 25 folk dance students. Second-toe length in relation to the hallux (longer or equal/shorter), hallux deformities, first metatarsophalangeal joint inflammation, number of callosities, and daily pain scores were recorded in both groups and compared.
Results: There was no statistically significant difference in toe length between the two groups (P > .05). Ballet dancers with equal-length or shorter second toes had lower pain scores, less first metatarsophalangeal joint inflammation, and fewer callosities in their feet compared with dancers with longer second toes.
Conclusions: Second-toe length seems to be a factor in the development of forefoot disorders in classical ballet dancers but not folk dancers. Dancers who have equal-length or shorter second toes in relation to the hallux may have fewer forefoot disorders as dance professionals. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 97(5): 385–388, 2007)
The biomechanical effects of talectomy on the foot were investigated in seven fresh below-the-knee amputation specimens using pressure-sensitive films placed on the facets of the calcaneus, footprints, and loading-pattern diagrams in the intact foot and after talectomy with anterior and posterior displacement of the foot. Both talectomy techniques distorted the loads carried by the facets of the calcaneus. In the intact foot, 65.6% of the loads were carried by the posterior facet of the calcaneus and 34.4% by the anterior and middle facets. After talectomy with anterior displacement of the foot, although the loads carried by the anterior and middle facets decreased significantly (P = .018), the increase in the loads carried by the posterior facet was not significant compared with the intact foot (P = .176). Similarly, the loads carried by the posterior facet decreased significantly after talectomy with posterior displacement of the foot (P = .028), but the increases in the loads carried by the anterior and middle facets were not significant (P = .735). Comparing the two types of talectomy, the loads carried by each facet changed significantly (P = .018). Talectomy with posterior displacement of the foot also changed the loading patterns and resulted in significant pronation of the foot. These results suggest that talectomy should be performed only as a salvage procedure and that talectomy with anterior displacement of the foot may be preferred when talectomy is indicated. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 96(6): 495–498, 2006)