18 Year old patient presents that has been toe walking for 11 years. He was told he needed surgery to fix the condition, after speaking to his worried mother we investigated our options to see if we could help.

Toe walking refers to a walking pattern in which a person walks on the balls of their feet or their toes, rather than using a typical heel-to-toe gait. It’s common in children who are learning to walk. However, persistent toe walking beyond the toddler years can sometimes indicate an underlying condition.

Causes of Toe Walking:

Idiopathic Toe Walking:

This is the most common cause of toe walking, and it means that there’s no known reason for the behaviour. Some children simply develop a habit of walking this way.

Short Achilles Tendon:

This tendon links the back of your calf muscles to your heel bone. If it’s too short, it can prevent the heel from touching the ground.

Genetic, Muscular and Neurologial disorders:

There are Genetic, Muscular and Neurologial disorders that can present with toe walking. It is important to get an early diagnosis from a medical professional to determine the cause, effect and treatment available.


Treatment for toe walking depends on the cause and the age of the child. Some potential treatments include:

Physical Therapy:

Stretching exercises to improve muscle tone and lengthen the Achilles tendon can be beneficial.

Custom Orthotics:

These can help to position the feet correctly and promote a normal walking pattern.


If the child is young and there are no other underlying conditions, the doctor might recommend simply watching and waiting to see if the child outgrows the behaviour.

It’s important to consult with a paediatrician or orthopaedic specialist if you’re concerned about your child’s toe walking, especially if it persists beyond the age of 2 or is accompanied by other symptoms.