Cuboid Subluxation a Common Cause of Foot Injury in Trail Running

Trail Running
Trail Running
Winter trail running in the Wasatch mountains


If you are like me trail running is in your blood. You wake up and crave dirt under your feet and the sound of the wind whipping past you as you fly through canyons and over mountain passes. There is nothing better than feeling the freedom associated with trail running. On the other hand, there is nothing more crushing to a runner than an injury that keeps them off the trail.

Cuboid Subluxation and Trail Running

One of the most common injuries associated with trail runners are foot injuries. This is due primarily to the uneven surfaces that trail runners expose their feet to.

Foot injury in trail running
The cuboid bone is a common site of foot injury in trail runners

Cuboid subluxation is a common foot injury associated with trail running. This foot injury is associated with pain in the middle of the foot. This pain is often felt when the runner transitions onto the toes while running or walking. It often starts suddenly following a run on an uneven surface.

Cause of Cuboid Subluxation Foot Injury

These uneven surfaces cause extra stress on the bones in the middle of the foot. One of these bones named the cuboid bone is prone to subluxation. Subluxation is a slight misalignment of the bone. This misalignment decreases the flexibility of the foot and causes pain when the foot is in the flexed position.

Cuboid Subluxation Treatment

This pain can significantly limit the runner’s ability to run. Fortunately, this foot injury can be fixed with a simple manipulation that readjusts the alignment of the cuboid bone in the foot. Often the foot pain resolves immediately following the manipulation.


If you are suffering from lateral mid-foot pain when you run you might be suffering from cuboid subluxation. Don’t let this foot injury keep you from your trail running cravings. One simple treatment can get you back in the backcountry.


Craig Nuttall is a Family Nurse Practitioner that specializes in sports medicine. He is also an avid trail runner and outdoor enthusiast.