Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome
and how Massage Therapy helps!

Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome is a compression of the posterior tibial nerve that produces pain from the ankle to the foot. It can be tingling, numbness, sharp pain or a burning sensation. Occasionally, the source is actually a nerve compression further up the leg.

The tarsal tunnel is a narrow space located on the inside part of the ankle right next to the ankle bone. It is covered with a thick ligament (the flexor retinaculum) that protects the arteries, veins and nerves within the ankle.

The posterior tibial nerve is the nerve that can easily become compressed and lead to this disorder.


  • Flat feet- Fallen arches create a tilting of the heal, which produces a strain with compression of the nerve
  • Cysts, varicose veins, bone spurs or any abnormal structure that occupies space within the tunnel can compress the nerve
  • Injury, like an ankle sprain which produces swelling and compresses the nerve
  • Diabetes or Arthritis that causes swelling and compresses the nerve


  • Tingling, burning or numbness
  • Shooting Pain in the area
  • Tenderness when walking or rising from a chair or bed

The symptoms may be felt on the inside of the ankle or the bottom of the foot. It may even extend down the toes or into the arch of the foot. Rarely, but it does happen with some folks that have this injury, the pain goes up the leg toward the knee.

Foot massage can help to relax the muscles in the foot and ankle, allowing the inflammation to calm and the pain to decrease. Using cold massage stones can dramatically decrease inflammation in this syndrome.

It also increases circulation to the area which increases oxygen and nutrient flow, allowing faster healing.

This is one of the popular educational massage videos that teaches Thai foot massage, and how to massage common foot disorders.

This is the entire 2-DVD set, The Art of Thai Foot Massage which teaches how to use either cold stones or a Thai foot massage tool, and common Thai foot massage techniques that can reduce the pressure of tarsal tunnel or plantar fasciitis.

Be sure to ask the massage therapist if he or she has experience working with muscles, tendons, and ligaments of the foot associated with Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome or other foot disorders. 

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