Excuse my enthusiasm for this topic. It is a big thing and I am educating the world on this one. We all have a structurally short right leg with a discrepancy typically in the range of 5mm to 15mm. There are instances outside this range but even or near even leg length is rare and I do not see short left legs.
This is my theory. In prehistoric times it gave mother and child a greater chance of survival. We carry baby on the left hip freeing the strong right arm for work and defence. As primitive nomadic hunter gatherers in the forest this was a critical survival trait. Through evolutionary adaptation hominid bipedal species have developed the genetic dominant trait of a short right leg to facilitate this. It was the most successful model.
I have been studying Short Right Leg Syndrome in clinical practice for nine years. As I describe it, it is new knowledge and expect it will be the subject of future medical research. I do know the ancients did have some clue about it in traditional Chinese medicine. However, it would seem to be unknown to conventional medicine and alternative medical streams too. I urge you to read the following story because we all have a structurally short right leg and, with few exceptions, it impacts our mobility and internal health to varying degrees. Particularly as we age beyond the life expectancy of our prehistoric ancestors. An overview of my research findings and a comprehensive description of the condition is here:
When I suffered major lumbro-sacral injury in 2016, I did not initially put it down to a leg length discrepancy. The subsequent deterioration of lower limb function, internal health and vitality did not look like anything I had treated up to that time. Only after five years of escalating symptoms and ineffective treatment from medico's and therapists did I begin to suspect what might be the underlying cause.
In hindsight, there had been a number of clues indicating the effects of a structurally short leg had been impacting mobility and internal health since my teens. Gradually escalating through the 40's. Mostly managing fine with TCM herbal treatment, exercise and work activities. This is a common story to this point because, the fact is, the vast majority of all clients assessed in my clinical practice do have a short right leg. Taking athletic training to a another level through my 50's where I was training with and eventually matching champions, it broke me. Niggles suddenly turned into a decided limp and within a few days I suffered major lumbro-sacral injury that knocked me out of work. Four months later I am back in athletic training but an inexplicable loss of integrity in the knee knocks me out of sport.
As a result of chronic strain on the pelvis from a structural leg length discrepancy, now compounded by the effects of major lumbro-sacral injury, my condition began to deteriorate. Energetic Qi flow being more convincingly blocked by postural strain and the additional muscular spasm, I developed what I now describe as an "advanced" case of Short Right Leg Syndrome. This did not look anything like the lower limb and spinal issues I had been examining and treating in clinic.
Yes, I had a back injury but in the course of time symptoms escalated to include excruciating rheumatic knee pain, digestive complaints, constant pain down the Bladder meridian and swelling in the right leg, escalating blood pressure and Kidney deficiency symptoms, fluid retention in feet and ankles, rampant skin infection on the feet, toe injuries that would not heal, a need for daily naps to recover from limited physical activity, loss of integrity in the left knee, plus several minor relapses of the disc bulge injury. I used to be an elite athlete. I now walked like Frankenstein.
I consulted three Medical Doctors, two Chiro's, one Osteo, two TCM doctors, two Remedial Therapists, a Reiki Master and one Thai Massage Therapist for lower limb and low back symptoms. None examined structural leg length. None of the extensive treatment received over a five year period did more than give limited temporary relief.
Had it not been for the Pandemic lockdowns of 2020, I do not think I would have successfully negotiated this condition. In January 2021 when facing the prospect of retirement from active life because pain and disability was becoming too much to manage, I commenced self-treatment for a structurally short right leg and inserted a 5mm adjusting wedge under my right foot. Dramatic and enduring change occurred from the very next day and continued for ten months. Beyond that point condition improved subtly in terms of internal health, mental function and physical ability. A summary of the recovery process is here...
I have come to recognise my condition was an "advanced" case of Short Right Leg Syndrome. I rarely sight these in day to day clinical practice. However, I suspect were I to visit retirement homes I would see many.
As a Remedial Therapist the scope of practice is pain, dysfunction and injury to soft tissue restricting mobility. Many individuals experiencing symptomatic effects to lower limbs and spine are sighted in my clinical practice. These "mobility" cases can be experiencing longterm acute pain and disability that does not respond to conventional treatment. Addressing leg length discrepancy has yielded success in many of these cases. These clients frequently report coincidental beneficial side effects to "internal" health following the commencement of heel lift treatment for SRLS.
Flexibility through the pelvis is preventative. However, where acute symptoms have developed, it is like we always have to resort to inserting a small adjusting heel lift under the short leg.
There is no expectation of realigning the skeletal structure into perfect symmetry. This is not possible after many decades under the influence of gravity. The aim is to incrementally back off strain through the soft tissue of the joints so that energetic Qi flow can resume unhindered, clearing thickening and tightening through the connective tissue and fascia. This adjustment is only a fraction of the actual discrepancy so additional direct treatment and rehab exercise may be necessary on an ongoing basis.
Interestingly, for the Reiki practitioners and energetic healers (including acupuncturists), no amount of energetic or spiritual healing overcomes an energetic block generated by structural and postural anomalies. Three times the Reiki Master exclaimed in surprise at the huge flow of energy to my legs during treatment. Three times the result was miraculous and I walked like a young man again! For three days. Then as the energy dissipated as though the battery was running down, my own energy could not pass through the pelvis to recharge it. I walked like Frankenstein again.
In totality it can be a complex condition that is overlooked or dismissed because the primary influencing factor generated by minor postural strain through the soft tissue of the pelvis is blocked energetic Qi flow that impacts mobility and internal health. I call this the "Pelvic Block." It is unknown to conventional medico's and therapists who's view is largely restricted to biomechanical and neurological factors.
Thankyou for your time.
Remedial Massage Therapist
Member of Massage & Myotherapy Australia
mbl 0416 268 255