What Is Turf Toe In The NFL?

Turf Toe

What Is Turf Toe?

Turf Toe is a common injury in the NFL, particularly among players who play on artificial turf. The big toe joint is hyperextended, causing the ligaments and tendons to stretch or tear. This can result in pain, swelling, and difficulty moving the toe. It can sideline a player for several weeks and may require surgery to repair the damage.

Turf Toe’s effects can linger long after the initial injury has healed. Players who suffer from this injury often miss several games while recovering. In some cases, surgery may be required to repair the damage. Players who have suffered from turf toe often report pain and stiffness in the affected joint.

If you suspect that you have this injury, seek medical attention immediately. Early diagnosis and treatment can help prevent the injury from becoming more severe.

Why Turf Toe Is Common In The NFL

Turf toe is more common in football than in any other sport because of the nature of the game. Players are constantly changing directions and planting their feet hard on the turf, which puts a lot of stress on the joint, which can lead to injury.

It is also more common in the NFL than in other leagues because of the size and speed of the players. The bigger and faster a player is, the greater the force that can be applied to the toe joint.

How To Prevent Turf Toe

Turf Toe can be very painful and make it difficult to walk or run. If you suspect you have a turf toe, it is crucial to see a doctor so that they can diagnose the injury and recommend treatment.

There are several ways you can prevent turf toe, including:

Wearing Proper Footwear: Wear shoes that fit well and support your feet. Avoid wearing shoes with high heels or narrow toes.

Warm-Up Before Playing: Take some time to warm up your muscles and joints before playing, which will help reduce your risk of injury.

Stretch: Be sure to stretch your muscles and joints before and after playing. This will help keep them flexible and less likely to be injured.

Avoiding Sudden Movements: Try to avoid sudden movements or changes in direction when playing, which can put stress on the joint and lead to injury.

If you experience a turf toe, it is essential to rest the joint and avoid activities that worsen the pain. You may also need to wear a splint or boot to immobilize the joint and allow it to heal correctly.

If the pain is severe, you may need crutches to help you get around. It can be painful, but it is usually not terribly serious. You can avoid this injury and stay on the playing field with proper treatment and prevention.

Picking Shoes To Prevent Turf Toe

To prevent turf toe, it is important to pick shoes that fit well and do not rub against the toes. There are several things to consider when picking shoes to prevent turf toe, including:

1) Size Of The Shoe: Make sure the shoe is not too tight or too loose.

2) Material Of The Shoe: Avoid shoes with stiff materials that could rub against the toes.

3) Style Of The Shoe: Choose a shoe with a wide toe box to allow for the toes.

4) Height Of The Heel: A higher heel can put more pressure on the toes and lead to injury

5) Width Of The Shoe: A wider shoe will provide more stability and support for the foot, which can help prevent injury.

6) Type Of Activity You Will Be Doing: Choose a shoe that is designed for the activity you will be doing. For example, choose a shoe with good ankle support and a wide toe box if you are playing basketball.

7) Individual Needs: Consider your foot type and other factors that might make you more susceptible to turf toe.


Turf toe is a common injury in the NFL that can have long-term consequences for players. Though it may seem like a minor injury, it can keep players off the field for an extended period and cause them to miss games. Players need to be aware of the symptoms and take steps to prevent the injury from happening.

If you think you may have a turf toe, please consult a doctor. The injury can sideline athletes for weeks or even months if not treated properly. The good news is that most athletes can fully recover and return to their sport with treatment.