Preface – A story of getting fit and healthy starting with your feet
I am a physical therapist and treat people who have pain in their feet, knees and backs. I particularly incorporate a special toe training into my treatment, which brings back the original function of the toes. It is my greatest pleasure to witness someone, who was once told that there was no other way but to have a surgery, starts walking without any more pain.
However, it’s not that I had always done treatment like this from the very beginning. After graduating from a vocational school of rehabilitation sciences, I started working at a rehabilitation hospital. When two years had passed, I realized that there were those who got better with rehabilitation but also those who didn’t.
I looked into differences, but couldn’t find any answers. After all I quit in the middle of the fifth year of my career without fulfilling my aspiration. Shortly after, I met an internal medicine doctor and the director of Mirai Clinic, Kazuaki Imai, who treats patients without relying on medications and surgeries as much as possible and brings the body functions back to the way they are supposed to be.
He handed me a pair of five-toe socks on which had special treatment. As soon as I put them on, I felt the difference in my toes in how they could grip the ground. I got excited and had my wife try them on also, as she had been suffering from the pain in her knees and hip joint because of her severe bowlegs ever since she was in grade school. She said, “With these socks, my little toes touch the ground and I can feel the inward muscles of my legs strengthened from within.” Then I took a picture of her legs right away and a week later I took another one to compare. Her bowlegs got so much better and the pain in her knees and hips were gone.
“How could it improve just with these…?” I wondered. As I look back I remember getting really excited thinking that I might actually be able to save many people with the rehabilitation on which I had once given up without being able to fulfill my aspiration.
I started studying earnestly about toes and their functions when I started working at Mirai Clinic. However, there weren’t enough reference materials as it was still an unknown field that was not listed in any textbooks at that time. Nonetheless, I believed that I could find answers in the patients’ feet and kept working on them trying in different ways. Eventually many patients’ body structures started getting stable just by stretching their toes straight.
In this book we will unfold stories of how to get fit and healthy starting with your feet, showing various cases I have treated as examples.