More on Leg Length Discrepancies

Hi Guys,

I hope you guys are well?

I have a question I hope you can help me with?

Last week I assessed an entire football team, and over 90% have some sort of Leg Length Discrepancy (LLD). I am working with the physiotherapist to improve their weaknesses, including using sole lifts.

My question is if it’s a tibial short leg, then a lift with align the knee and hip. But a lift in a leg with a short femur will align the pelvis but raise the knee higher than the other side. Would you still insert a sole raise, and if not, what would you do?

Kind Regards



Hi Luke

Yes, you are correct in your assumption of the change in mechanics, and yes, most often, we prescribe a sole lift, if a lift is indicated. Keep in mind that if they are asymptomatic and test out well, a lift may not be indicated. Hope that helps. You can also search LLD on the blog; we have written extensively on it:

Remember sole lifts will correct the LLD but it could shift the pelvis off further…….many LLDs are from pelvic asymmetry and core weakness, this encompasses hip rotation differences which is a typical response to the core and pelvis that is distorted. 
merely forcing a change at the Sole does not mean you are making the positive change at the top……however it may in some cases……you have to determine that with your evaluations.

Most folks legs are of symmetrical length……..the changes at the top (core / pelvis/ hip) is what throws the apparent length off.

i wish i had a good answer for your great insight……..but it is about
1- making the right changes…… that all parts are in cooperation for the restoration change
2- that you are directing change and not a further body compensattion to the compensation you have forced…….(if it is in fact a forced compensation and not the correction you are hoping for)….. time and re-evals will determine this
3- after restoration and strengthenging you must quickly wean off the lifts from them
4- you are speaking of tibial and femoral short………those are structural short LLDs , make sure you know if you are dealing with functional or structural shortness

Hope that Helps

Ivo and Shawn

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