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Open AccessArticle

Comparison of the Intrinsic Foot Muscle Activities between Therapeutic and Three-Dimensional Foot-Ankle Exercises in Healthy Adults: An Explanatory Study

1
Department of Industrial Health, College of Health Sciences, Catholic University of Pusan, Busan 46252, Korea
2
Department of Physical Therapy, College of Life and Health Science, Hoseo University, Asan 31499, Korea
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(19), 7189; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17197189
Received: 7 September 2020 / Revised: 22 September 2020 / Accepted: 29 September 2020 / Published: 1 October 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Physical Rehabilitation and Sports Medicine of Human Movement)
Background: In recent years, a three-dimensional ankle exercise has been proposed as a practice for strengthening the intrinsic foot muscles, however this topic still requires further research. This study aimed to compare the activities of the intrinsic muscles in healthy participants during 3D foot–ankle exercises, namely, short foot (SF), and toe spread out (TSO). Methods: Prior to the experiment, 16 healthy adults were trained on how to perform SF, TSO, and 3D foot–ankle exercises for an hour. Once all participants passed the foot–ankle exercise performance test, we randomly measured the activity of the intrinsic foot muscles using electromyography while the patients were performing foot–ankle exercises. Results: The abductor hallucis (AbH), extensor hallucis longus (EHL), and flexor hallucis brevis (FHB) activities showed significant differences among the exercises for intrinsic foot muscle strengthening (p < 0.01). Additionally, the AbH/AdH (adductor hallucis) ratio showed significant differences among the exercises for strengthening the intrinsic foot muscles (p < 0.01). Conclusions: Our results showed that the 3D extension exercise is as effective as the therapeutic exercise in terms of the AbH and FHB activities, and the AbH/AdH ratio. On the contrary, the 3D flexion exercise showed superiority in terms of the EHL activity. View Full-Text
Keywords: foot–ankle exercise; intrinsic foot muscle; proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation; short foot; toe spread out foot–ankle exercise; intrinsic foot muscle; proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation; short foot; toe spread out
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Park, D.-J.; Hwang, Y.-I. Comparison of the Intrinsic Foot Muscle Activities between Therapeutic and Three-Dimensional Foot-Ankle Exercises in Healthy Adults: An Explanatory Study. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17, 7189.

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