Talipes Exercise Sheet

What is positional talipes?

The baby’s foot (or feet) will turn inwards and downwards. The foot (or feet) is not fixed in this position and can be moved through normal range of movement.  This type of talipes is usually a short-term condition that corrects itself once the baby has been born and has room to stretch their legs and feet.  It can take up to 12 weeks, on some rarer occasion’s further assessment and treatment such as a gentle plaster casting may be required but your physiotherapist will advise you if this is needed.

What causes positional talipes?

Positional talipes is a foot condition which normally develops due to the natural foetal position in the womb and as your baby grows, it runs out of room to move and kick their legs.

How is positional talipes treated?

Positional talipes will usually improve without any treatment within a couple of months; however, you are also advised to do the following:

  • Perform some simple exercises on your baby’s foot (or feet).
  • Make sure your baby’s clothes are not too tight around their feet. Give them plenty of time out of their baby grows to allow them to kick their feet
  • Massage their foot and ankle with olive oil, baby oil, or baby lotion especially around their skin creases.


By carrying out the following stretches, it can help to improve your baby’s positional talipes and speed up the time it takes for the foot (or feet) to regain full active movement.

Exercise 1:

  • Hold your baby’s foot by using your finger and thumb on either side.
  • Bring the foot round to the middle so its in line with the leg.
  • Hold for a count of 10.
  • Repeat 3 times.

Excerise 2:

  • Keeping the foot in line with the leg, bring the foot upwards so that it is in a flat position.
  • Hold for a count of 10.
  • Repeat 3 times.

Exercise 3:

  • Tickle the outside edge of your baby’s foot. This will stimulate the muscles and your baby will start to turn their foot outwards, which helps to strengthen their muscles.
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