Turf toe

Turf toe is an injury to the underside of the joint at the base of the big toe (the "ball of the foot.") The injury may involve damage to ligaments, tendons, or bone separately or in combination.

It is an injury which often affects athletes - American football players such as Tom Brady and Deion Sanders, as well as soccer great George Best are among the notable sportsmen to have suffered from this injury.


These  include pain, tenderness, and swelling of the toe joint. There is often a sudden acute onset of pain during a push-off phase of running. Usually, the pain is not enough to keep the athlete from physical activities or finishing a game. This causes further injury to the big toe and can dramatically increase the healing time required.


Typical management of turf toe injuries includes the RICE approach (rest, ice, compression, and elevation), although over-the-counter (OTC) medications may also help to manage pain and inflammation.  Often, footwear often not provide enough support for the person with turf toe, so corrective and OTC orthotics may also be of use.